THE raft of NHS service cuts planned for our region will result in “an unacceptable reduction in the quality of care”, according to North Yorkshire County Council.
Councillors voted yesterday against any reduction in the scale or quality of healthcare provided by NHS North Yorkshire and York as it looks to reduce a £19 million spending deficit.
Coun Jim Clark, chairman of the scrutiny of health committee, said: “This council, while acknowledging the financial issues facing the NHS North Yorkshire & York, considers there is no room to reduce the health care services currently provided to meet the immediate, urgent and unplanned needs of its local residents and its visitors.”
He said: “These changes are the biggest in the history of the NHS in North Yorkshire. If they are implemented, the result will be an unacceptable reduction in the quality and availability of health care for thousands of people.
“The overwhelming endorsement of this motion today sends a loud and clear message to the NHS that the cuts under consideration are totally unacceptable, and will be fought robustly and vigorously.”
Christopher Long, chief executive of NHS North Yorkshire and York, said NHS organisations across North Yorkshire and York had jointly commissioned management consultants KPMG to help develop a long term strategy to “return the health economy to a stable financial footing”.
He also said there were no plans to close any district general hospitals or make moves to a single maternity and paediatric unit for North Yorkshire.
He said: “I want to be very clear that should any of the suggestions require significant service change then the organisations involved are committed to formally engage and consult with patients, the public and all relevant partners.”
Meanwhile Simon Cox, shadow chief officer of NHS Scarborough and Ryedale CCG, has moved to end speculation over the future of services at Scarborough Hospital.
He said: “We can confirm that the current opening hours of A&E and the level of maternity services currently provided at Scarborough Hospital will not be affected by the outcome of the financial review currently being undertaken.
“More detail about the measures to be taken forward will be presented to the Board of NHS North Yorkshire and York in January 2013.”