ON SATURDAY 4 MARCH 2017 SPAG MEMBERS JOINED IN THE DEMONSTRATION FOR

"OUR NHS"

 


 

 

 CLOSURES AT LOCAL HOSPITAL:WHEN WILL WE BE LISTENED TO?

Tom White, SPAG Spokesperson on Health


After visiting a friend at the Maudsley hospital at the beginning of this year, I discovered that Aubrey Lewis I, a specialist ward for people aged over 65 admitted to hospital with acute mental illness, would be closed inspite of the fact that there had been no public consultation.

All sorts of reasons were given for the closure including worries about asbestos and a leaking roof.  South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust (SLaM) told the press that after refurbishment in May the ward would reopen.  It didn't.  The latest excuse is that the firm doing the refurbishment job has gone bust.  This is nothing short of outrageous!  Is there a shortage of painters and decorators?

You may recall our fight to save the excellent Marina House drug and alcohol centre in Camberwell.  SLaM said it was closing because they had been granted £95,000 to provide a probation service for young offenders, which would be housed on the premises. But the building has been mainly empty ever since.  As you can imagine, the closure has caused a lot of grief and distress for many previous users.  For SLaM to later reveal that the probation service is not going to happen at Marina House after all is nothing short of scandalous.

The Southwark Council Scrutiny Committee should be asking some serious questions.  World-renowned expert on alcohol and drug abuse Prof. Mike Farrell was turfed out of Marina House and continues his work in Australia, while the non-medical director of SLaM, Mark Allen, sits at his desk.

SLaM insists that because they are a trust, they can do as they like.  We will never probably know how much damage has been done  to vulnerable people with no good reason, nor how much money has been spent unnecessarily on plans which were never carried out.  Frankly, some heads should roll!




Tom White Speaking at the Forum Meeting on NHS Reforms 22 March 2013

                          
Forum Meeting on NHS Reforms 22 March 2013 Denise Nicholls Chairs