Worcester’s Conservative Candidate Robin Walker has welcomed the extra £2.8 million cash injection for local doctors from the Prime Minister’s challenge fund which was announced at the end of last week. This will help provide more out of hours support from local GPs and deliver a 7 day a week service for GP access in South Worcestershire. As MP he had written to the Health Secretary to support the bid from “Staying well in South Worcestershire” which will cover 32 GP surgeries including Spring Gardens where Robin is a patient.

In addition he has welcomed the publication of detailed figures that show that there are more beds, doctors and nurses in Worcester’s Worcestershire Royal Hospital, no more mixed sex wards, fewer bed sores and complaints at the end of 2014/15 than there were in 2010/11, the year that the Conservatives came to power.

Labour, who left an NHS where the number of managers were increasing but frontline staff numbers were being cut, have been running a negative election campaign, suggesting that “Tory cuts” have damaged the health service, but the figures, produced by the Worcestershire Acute Trust this week, show the exact opposite.

Since 2010 the number of doctors in the Acute Trust has risen from 235 to 282 full time equivalents, overall nursing posts have risen by more than 10% from 3,010 to 3,384. The number of full time equivalent positions for fully trained nurses has risen from 1,650 to 1,826.

There are 32 more beds available today at the Worcestershire Royal Hospital than in 2010. The number of A&E admissions across the Trust has risen by more than 5,000 of which almost 4,000 were in Worcester and whilst emergency admissions for the over 75s have increased by 400 or 5% in Worcester, the number of elective admissions has risen by 10,000 or one third.

Strikingly the number of hospital acquired infections has fallen sharply with 8 cases of MRSA and 92 of C-Diff in 2010/11 and no cases of MRSA at all in the last year with C-Diff cases reduced by 2/3.

Pressure ulcers, which are preventable but can cause huge damage as a result of people not being moved regularly enough, have been reduced from 146 four years ago to just 10 in the most recent year. The total number of complaints received by the Trust has also fallen from 627 to 552 despite the rising number of people coming in and out of the Hospitals.

Robin has supported a number of major upgrades to the Worcestershire Royal Hospital during his time as MP, campaigning to bring radiotherapy to Worcester and for both a dedicated midwife led birth unit and a specialist breast cancer unit in the city. The £25 million Worcestershire Oncology Center is already treating patients and Robin had a sneak preview of the Meadow Birth Centre when he visited the hospital last week. The Worcestershire Breast Unit is due to open later this year.

Commenting on the announcement and the figures, he said:

“To address some of the pressures on our NHS as a result of an ageing populatuion and more people living with long term conditions we need to support better access to medical care and that is why, earlier this year, I wrote a letter of support for Staying well in South Worcestershire’s bid to the Prime Minister’s Challenge fund. I am delighted that we have an additional £2.8 million coming into our health service in the South of the County to improve access to GPs and deliver more hours and more days in the week of care.”

“Labour’s negative campaign has been talking down our local NHS, undermining public confidence and denigrating the hard work of staff. I am incredibly grateful to all the hardworking staff at our hospital who have been treating more patients, providing better care which decreases the number of infections and bed sores as well as having the vision to press for new and better services. I reject Labour’s negativity and want to celebrate what has been achieved for all of Worcestershire’s residents. I want to say a huge thank you to local NHS staff who have worked so hard to achieve all this. I am proud that our Government supported them with the investment in staff numbers and facilities to do it.”

“Just imagine if these numbers were reversed. If we were talking about fewer staff, fewer beds, more bed sores and fewer facilities at our hospital. People with cancer still having to travel miles outside the County for their vital treatment. That is not the situation today but the situation we inherited in 2010. There is no doubt that our NHS will need still more investment in the years to come but it is a Conservative Government and the strong economy that we can provide that will give us the means to provide that investment. We have a proud record and these figures prove it.”

Notes to editors:

For more details of the Prime Minister’s challenge fund and the investment in South Worcestershire see:

http://www.england.nhs.uk/ourwork/qual-clin-lead/calltoaction/pm-ext-access/

For Robin’s recent releases on the NHS in Worcester see:

https://www.walker4worcester.com/articles/view_detail.php?id=c5ee6a4327a63256aaa1bd0c06ebc53f

https://www.walker4worcester.com/articles/view_detail.php?id=2961b469ce610e3871808bea0eec79d0

https://www.walker4worcester.com/articles/view_detail.php?id=a0df6d9978b576de0cce3cfdb369ce19

https://www.walker4worcester.com/articles/view_detail.php?id=4577789b9af9f2f64cce489953500dd8