Single HSSA proposal to be reviewed..

The BBC’s Dot Kirby is reporting that, in a memo, the Health Minister Michael McGimpsey has told NHS staff that the RPA proposal for a single regional Health and Social Services Authority, expected to replace the 4 existing Boards in April 2008, is to be reviewed – a Chief Executive Designate has already been appointed and legislation was due in November this year. Perhaps the Health Minister will eventually get around to making an official statement on the matter.. and has he told the Assembly’s Health Committee? How about some more consultation too? In the meantime you can watch the short Newsline discussion here [RealPlayer file]

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  • Turgon

    This is a rather worrying development.

    There are legimate arguments against there only being five Trusts. This has created the largest trust in the UK (Belfast) and has created some concerns regarding take overs rather than mergers. Wlilst some mergers were desirable and a decrease in the total number of trusts necessary; time will tell whether or not the changes in trusts are appropriate or result in too few trusts.

    In terms of there only being one HSSA there are few reasons not to have a single authority. Increased coordination seems reasonable at this level.

    The major danger in this is that again local politicians are baulking from necessary decisions in health. There is a danger especially with our number of politicians that parochial interests will result in yet another non decision. This may all sound a little abstract but remember that in 1966 a Stormount report recommended six acute hospitals in Northern Ireland. Whilst one can argue about exact numbers; change is inevitable and would be better to be co ordinated rather than sudden and disorganised such as the effective closure of South Tyrone.

    For very many years there has been a lack of implementation of strategic thinking on health. Previously this may have been due to direct rule ministers not wanting to rock the boat. Now there is a major danger that local ministers will be even worse.

  • DC

    As I read through the consultations, I didn’t notice any from the political parties, perhaps it wasn’t about political interference; however, you would think that those now involved in assembly committees would have had a view on it back then.

    Perhaps this disinterest is why it is now being re-reviewed with a view to re-consultating, etc.

    If so then more money wasted by our talented lot.