New Government must increase investment in health

CPFT Chief Executive calls for improved mental health funding 

New Government must increase investment in health
13 May 2015

New Government must increase investment in health says CPFT Chief Executive Aidan Thomas

In the end the outcome of the General Election was known a lot quicker than anyone first thought.

But regardless of which party formed the new Government my message to them – and the new MPs of Cambridgeshire – was always going to be the same.

More investment in the NHS is vital. This is not just about my Trust, but the entire National Health Service.

I know that people will point to NHS funding being “protected” for as many Budgets as most people can remember, but what many probably don’t realise is that Trusts like mine are also required to make “efficiency savings” - or cuts - to put it bluntly.

In the next year we will be required to find another £5 million of savings.

There is no choice. We will have to find that money as we have done for previous years, and find it with as little impact to patient care as possible.

It’s a massive challenge. But we know it won’t end there because the experts tell us there will be a tough spending review later this year and no can be sure what it will contain.

I make no excuses for talking about ‘the money’ because it is very timely.

CPFT is at the start of a new era after recently welcoming 1,400 new staff.

This comes after the Uniting Care Partnership – which includes CPFT and Cambridge University Hospitals - was last year selected as the preferred bidder to run Older People's services and adults with long-term conditions in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.

As a Trust we now provide not just mental health across the area and children’s community services in Peterborough. Instead, we now offer joined-up healthcare across the generations from young babies to those at the end of their lives.

From Monday, 18 May, we will welcome the Care Quality Commission to inspect our services, and despite the pressures of demand and on our finances, I’m proud of what we do, and how we’ve coped, improvised, and developed our services in the two years I’ve been at CPFT.

We’re also in the middle of National Mental Health Awareness Week and I only want the very best for our patients, but that requires investment from the very highest level so that mental health is given the same parity as acute health.

All the major parties have promised more money for the NHS. I heard their claims and, like millions of others, did my bit by voting last Thursday.

Now it’s their turn to deliver on their promises.

*An earlier version of this column first appeared in the Cambridge News on Monday, 11 May 2015

Ends

For more information please contact:

Andy Burrows
Communications Manager
E andy.burrows@cpft.nhs.uk
T 01223 726767

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust
Elizabeth House, Fulbourn Hospital
Cambridge, CB21 5EF

T 01223 219400 (open 8:30am to 5pm)
F 01480 398501

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