I recently commented that there is a consultation exercise being undertaken by Bassetlaw Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), which is responsible for the delivery of NHS services in our area.
There has been a lot of misinformation spread on the subject, so I wanted to set the record straight and explain the process.
The CCG has identified that the current mental health facilities at Bassetlaw Hospital are unfit for purpose.
They have proposed that specialist services to meet this need can instead be offered through refurbished facilities elsewhere (in this case Mansfield).
Other options have been considered, such as a new facility in Bassetlaw or refurbishing the current wards.
These issues are addressed in their FAQ document and the press release from the CCG can be found here.
Frequently asked questions, and the CCG’s answers, can be found here, including a concern I have personally raised about travel and distances.
Whilst the proposals put forward by the CCG are their preferred option, they are by no means final and they will be taking into account your views through their public consultation.
I will also be having further discussions with them on this issue and putting forward the views you have expressed to me.
The closing date for responses is April 18 and I would urge people in the strongest possible terms to make their views known.
However, I would also urge people to please read the documents first before commenting and comments, suggestions or objections must be raised through the proper channels, not by simply commenting on Facebook or Twitter.
The survey can be found here.
Mental health services are a cornerstone of our healthcare provision here in Bassetlaw and residents have come to expect the best care from our local NHS.
The current facilities have been identified as not being fit for purpose by our local NHS.
Facilities and care must therefore be a priority and whilst other options to satisfy this have been identified, I do have serious concerns about travelling and distances as I know constituents want to be able to access services as close to home as possible.
It is because of this I would once again urge people to take part in the consultation exercise and to make their views known on how they would feel best served.
I will make sure your views are fully represented and that any decision made not only reflects these views but is also taken in the best interests of the people of Bassetlaw.
Brendan Clarke-Smith is MP for Bassetlaw.