Cambridgshire health chiefs looking to plug £250m shortfall

Dr Fiona Head of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group
Dr Fiona Head of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group
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Health chiefs who are facing a £250 million shortfall by 2019 will be asking people in Fenland how services should change.

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group is looking to transform the county’s health services to make better use of its £1.3 billion budget.

GP surgeries going out of business, hospitals finding it harder to do planned operations and a lower quality of care are some of the things which could happen if changes are not made.

The group is running a Saturday cafe in Wisbech Library on July 4, from 10am to noon, for patients in Fenland to have their say on how the service should be transformed.

System Transformation Programme Director Dr Fiona Head said there are no plans at the moment but wants to hear people’s views on what changes should be made.

She said: “If we don’t change the system we will have more and more problems with organisations not being able to balance their books and, if that happens in an unplanned way, the risk is changes will be made to bits of services which will affect patients in a less positive way.

“This programme is about making the best use of what we have got and we want to hear people’s views.”

Today’s health service faces different demands than when it was first set up. More people turn up to hospitals as emergencies, which affect planned operations.

Dr Head said: “What we would like to do is think about treating people in a community or GP setting.”

The transformations could mean more services for the North Cambs Hospital.

Dr Head said: “The population in Peterborough and Cambridgeshire is going up by eight per cent in five years and we need to think of how to make the best use of buildings providing health services.

“It is really important that we got the best type of services and in the right locations for people.”