Grantham Journal letter: A few suggestions for the future of our hospital

Dr Suneil Kapadia, Medical Director of United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust. EMN-160718-123342001
Dr Suneil Kapadia, Medical Director of United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust. EMN-160718-123342001

Last Wednesday (2nd November) my wife Carol and I attended the ULHT meeting (or ‘Locality Forum’!) at Grantham Hospital, along with several key members of F4GH and several other Granthamians eager to hear further news regarding our hospital.

After (and during) a glossy slide show presented by Dr Kapadia, there were, as to be expected, several questions from our incredulous group, attempting to find out more detail regarding why Grantham could still not have a 24hr A&E and the efforts (or lack of) to remedy that disgraceful situation.

Some present at the meeting were apologists for ULHT. One lady said, waving her hand regally, I think to indicate a group including the F4GH leaders along with Carol and me, we were just constantly being negative. Well. If being negative is a euphemism for reflecting the views of tens of thousands of petitioners and marchers who are positive they want 24 hr A&E in this growing town and to make sure Grantham gets a fair deal out of the plans of ULHT, then yes, I guess we were!

A gentleman ULHT apologist asked me ‘well what would you do then?’ My reply at the time was that it was Dr Kapadia, as Medical Director and not I, who is paid a pretty fair old salary to solve these problems of recruitment and retention for us!

On reflection though, and for that gentleman and Dr Kapadia’s benefit, here’s what I would do;

1. Return to Grantham Hospital’s A&E the doctors drafted over to Lincoln

2. Reopen Grantham Hospital A&E 24 hrs daily

3. Send those patients Lincoln can’t handle over to Grantham. There must be room, according to the figures the erstwhile doctor’s statistical slides showing the number of patients attending Grantham A&E (if, of course, they are to be believed ) and of course, EMAS can happily handle them all, as it seems they have informed Dr Kapadia regarding the reverse journey!

Finally, a note of comedy; the good doctor informed one Granthamian, who told him about the transport issues many have in getting to Lincoln hospital, that ‘ULHT have asked Stagecoach if they can lay on more buses’!! No, really, I’m not making that up. Can’t wait for the 3am Stagecoach direct to Lincoln Hospital every day.

So next time your arm’s hanging by a thread and EMAS can’t help ‘cos they’re swamped’, try standing at the Lincoln bus stop for an hour, just in case Stagecoach decide it’s worth laying on a bus for you!

David Taylor

Cavendish Way

Grantham