Grantham Journal letter: Are patient figures being manipulated?

Scene Setters : Grantham Hospital.
Scene Setters : Grantham Hospital.
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The editorial comment in the Journal (November 8), vis-a-vis United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust must reflect the views and indeed the fears of thousands of local residents.

The unnecessary transfer of patients from Grantham to Lincoln has been going on for many months – recently exemplified by the case of an elderly man suffering a fall in Byron Avenue. Instead of being taken two minutes’ drive to Grantham hospital with its diagnostic equipment and professional expertise, paramedics on the spot chose to transport him uncomfortably all the way to Lincoln hospital. Such judgement must surely be called into question – or perhaps that decision had an ulterior motive, viz the deliberate manipulation of statistics.

The same tactics are being employed in other departments, eg dermatology, and there have been many stories in recent years of pregnant mums being given no choice of giving birth locally in Grantham, but being compelled to undertake that stressful journey to Lincoln. Was the closure of Grantham’s maternity unit formally ‘justified’ by such cynical tactics which artificially undermined its viability in terms of patient numbers?

Senior executives of ULHT continue to make claims of openness and promises of improvements to Grantham hospital, but in view of the evidence many local residents and politicians struggle to believe such claims. Should United Lincolnshire Hospitals TRUST by definition feel bound to re-name itself – or risk infringing the Trade Des-criptions Act?

Brian Bruce

Bourne Road, Colsterworth