By Democrat reporter
Dumbarton, Helensburgh and Lomond constituency MSP Jackie Baillie has called for NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde to ensure that patients from the Vale of Leven catchment area are consulted on the implementation of Trauma Networks.
NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde is beginning to consult on the plans to implement a Trauma Network which comes as part of the national policy to improve patient care.
The Trauma Network for NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde will see one Major Trauma Centre implemented at the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital (QEUH) – or the Royal Hospital for Children for paediatrics – which will be supported by Trauma Units at Glasgow Royal Infirmary and the Royal Alexandra Hospital (RAH).
The implementation of the Trauma Network will see changes for the patients with the most serious injuries who, instead of being admitted to the RAH will now be admitted directly to the QEUH.
Following the approval of the trauma plan, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde will now begin engaging with the public and consulting them on their plans. Jackie has called for the health board to ensure that patient representatives include those from the Vale of Leven catchment area.
Jackie Baillie said: “It is crucially important that patients from the Vale of Leven catchment area are consulted on any changes to the way their health services are delivered.
“Patients in my constituency were left out of the consultation on the proposal to change Breast Services at the Vale of Leven hospital. Those proposals would have had a serious impact on access to services for women and were devised without their views being heard at all.
“I hope that the health board will take seriously the need for a geographical spread of patient voices when they consult on their plans for a Trauma Network.”
Meanwhile, the MSP has called for more money to be given to Local Authorities for the Scottish Welfare Fund as new statistics from the Scottish Government reveal that demand for the Fund is increasing, at the same time as there are real terms cuts to its’ funding.
In 2018/19, local authorities received 193,230 applications for crisis grants – 11 per cent more than the previous year – and made 125,155 awards – an increase of 5 per cent on the year before.
West Dunbartonshire is one of thirteen local authorities that spent more than 100% of the available budget for 2018/19, it is also one of the eight local authorities who overspent last year.
The figures were revealed just a day after a new report from the Social Metrics Commission said that one in five people in Scotland are living in poverty, with the level increasing over the past two years.
Jackie Baillie said: “Despite increasing demand for the Welfare Fund, local authorities are being starved of the cash that they need to fund it.
“Poverty is rising across the country and thousands of families are reliant on food banks. For many people Crisis and Community Care Grants are vital for helping to prevent them from falling deeper into trouble.
“It is crucial that the Scottish Government provide additional money for this fund, rather than cutting the budgets, to enable local authorities to continue helping those most in need.”
- The Scottish Welfare Fund comprises of Community Care Grants – which help people to live independently – and Crisis Grants, which provide a safety net in a disaster or emergency.
- In 2018/19 Local Authorities received 70,425 applications for Community Care Grants (7% more than the previous year), made 40,485 awards (2% more than the previous year), and the acceptance rate was 58% (two percentage points lower than last year). Expenditure on Community Care Grant awards totalled £24.8 million, 5% more than in 2017/18. The average award was £614.
- In 2018/19 Local Authorities received 193,230 applications for Crisis Grants (11% more than the previous year), made 125,155 awards (5% more than the previous year), and the acceptance rate was 65% (three percentage points lower than last year). Expenditure on Crisis Grant awards totalled £10.4 million, 14% more than in 2017/18. The average award was £83.
- By 31 March 2019, for the first time, 100% of this budget had been spent across Scotland as a whole.