Put a red line round your local hospital on 1 April

“COMMUNITIES across Devon will be putting a red line around each hospital in protest of their own red line to ‘no cuts to any health services anywhere in Devon.

The Success Regime is proposing large cuts to health services in Devon as part of its Sustainability and Transformation Plan (STP).

The STP proposes to cut 590 acute and community beds across Devon, cut nurses’ jobs and access to continuing care, cut acute services in North Devon and cut most of the remaining community hospitals.

Dave Clinch, North Devon media liaison for Save Our Hospitals Services, said: “They really believe when it comes to cuts, “there are no red lines”. They claim to be able to deliver a better health service at the same time as making cuts to the tune of £550 million in Devon alone.

“On April 1 communities across Devon will put a human red line around each and every hospital. This will be a visible statement of our own red line “No cuts to any health services anywhere in Devon.”

The demonstration at North Devon District Hospital will begin at midday on Saturday, April 1.

This comes after proposals of NHS cuts were leaked, which sought to tackle a projected £430 million funding shortfall in the region’s healthcare system by 2019.

In August 2016, more than 200 Barnstaple residents marched from Pilton Park to the district hospital, calling for the safeguarding of services at the hospital.

Those who took part called upon the Success Regime to ensure that acute services, such as A&E, maternity and stroke units, were protected from the cuts.

Speaking at the time, Angela Pedder, chief executive of the Success Regime, said: “We know local people care deeply about the services that Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust provides and we thank them for their continued support.

“However, we’ve been very clear that the NHS in Devon is facing both clinical and financial sustainability challenges.

“The challenges faced are set out in our Case for Change document and all health organisations in Northern, Eastern and Western Devon are working together to improve care, provide more integrated and locally tailored services, and tackle the projected £100 million a year overspend.

“The team has been working closely, as part of the Success regime programme, with NHS leaders and GPs, as well as local public and patient representatives, to develop proposals on future options for local health and care services.”