An Open Letter to the Special Meeting of the Health and Adult Social Care Overview and Scrutiny Committee, 3 October 2018
Dear Committee Members,
I am writing to you on behalf of the residents of my ward, Peninsula, to express my extreme concern and disappointment at the selection of Option B under the Kent & Medway Stroke Services Review, which would not see a Hyper Acute Stroke Unit (HASU) located at Medway Maritime Hospital.
Peninsula is a rural ward and already faces a wide range of complex and individual challenges relating to its infrastructure and accessibility, not least due to the geographical divide and difficulties posed by the river Medway. It is therefore shocking to me that Option D, which was found to have the least negative options on patient travel times across Kent AND Medway has not been selected. Rather, an option which excludes Medway Maritime Hospital, currently the hospital providing services to the most patients, has been selected as preferred.
The impacts of this decision on the present and future patients residing within my ward cannot be understated. The reliance on a single main access route for most residents (particularly at Grain, All Hallows and Stoke villages) means that only the most minor of traffic incidents would dramatically impact on the journey times a patient being transported by BLA could expect on their journey to receive treatment at Medway Maritime, let alone increasing this journey even further by relocating services to a HASU further away.
As a ward Councillor, I am sure you understand I cannot sit idly by and allow the quality of care, accessibility, and indeed the very lives of my residents to be put at risk. I urge every member to join me in voicing their concerns and vehemently opposing the preferred Option, Option B.
Councillor Phil Filmer
Portfolio Holder for Frontline Services
Member for Peninsula