Due to late voting in the House of Commons I was unfortunately unable to be present at the Extraordinary Meeting of Bude Community Network Panel to listen to concerns about Stratton Minor Injuries Unit.
A senior member of my team attended the meeting and listened to constituent concerns and responses from Tamsyn Anderson, Director of Primary Care for Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust and Jackie Pendleton, Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group.
I am very pleased that the KCCG reiterated again that there are no plans to shut Stratton Hospital, and that the reason for a reduction in hours is not due to a decrease in funding.
Stratton hospital has, however, faced staffing issues which contributed to the over-night closure; there have also been difficulties bringing in new staff for several reasons.
Stratton require three additional members of staff who will need to have or will need to undertake MIU training. This could be a great opportunity for anybody already within the nursing profession, or who may wish to return to it.
The future of health care is important to all of us in North Cornwall and there are many ways we could potentially build resilience and improve our local health system. Bude Town Council could also insist that several houses in any new development could include a planning restriction which is solely for workers in the NHS in Bude Stratton; I would absolutely support this approach.
I am also in favour of opening a Health Care Academy in in the area. Research shows that people tend to live where they train, and North Cornwall should be doing everything it can to retain and offer long term employment to those people who train here and wish to stay.
As Member of Parliament I will continue to work with KCCG, Cornwall Council, the Government and the NHS to ensure that North Cornwall has the health care provision it deserves and demands.