Today’s launch of the new Treat Me Local campaign will aim to bring about 12 changes in the delivery of Fenland healthcare in just 12 months.
Local MP Steve Barclay has drawn up a wish list following a series of meetings with GPs across Fenland, and is convinced they can be achieved within a year with the right amount of pressure and public backing.
He said: “Too much treatment remains in our hospitals when it can and should be delivered within our local community.
“Treating patients locally brings significant benefits. It saves travel time, transport costs, reduces time off work, makes it easier for family and friends to attend to support patients, and is less tiring for patients. Too often services continue to be delivered in hospitals simply for historic reasons.”
Mr Barclay said support for change through a Parliamentary Petition was vital for the government to put pressure on local health managers to deliver the 12 changes.
One of the top priorities is to provide chemotherapy in the community, with hospitals serving North East Cambridgeshire setting up satellite oncology services.
Mr Barclay said he recently opened a new local oncology unit at the St George’s Medical Centre in Littleport, where cancer patients can be treated by nurses travelling from Addenbrookes Hospital, rather than patients travelling to the hospital in Cambridge.
He now wants to see similar satellite units across the Fens, with nurses travelling from the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King’s Lynn to the North Cambs Hospital in Wisbech, from Hinchinbrooke Hospital to Doddington Hospital and from Peterborough Hospital to the New Queen Street GP surgery in Whittlesey.
Other changes include increasing the Minor Injuries Unit opening hours at Doddington Hospital and the North Cambs Hospital to 8am to 8pm weekdays and weekends, community nurses being trained to give intravenous therapy in the home or locally, and GPs to be given blood testing equipment to avoid unnecessary referrals to hospital.
To join the campaign, visit: stevebarclay.net