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downsmail.co.uk News


Mortality rate THE mortality rate in Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells hospitals is causing concerns, and care plan- ning and capacity issues are being investigated. However, the GP-led NHS West


Rural homes GP cluster planwarning


Kent CCG heard there had been a month-by-month improvement in the summer. The introduction of seven-day working had improved the situation forweekend deaths. A new mortality review system introduces “a duty of candour to relatives”. Investigation into deaths is now mandated for the hospital trust.


Care home GPs ALL GP practices in Maidstone and West Kent will be eligible to deliver wider services for residents in care homes and the CCG has approved enhanced payments to cover costs. The services will include: a geri-


plan ‘backed’ THE idea of a “mega greenfield de- velopment” to accommodate the government’s addition of 7,700 homes to Maidstone’s Local Plan was gaining ground, according to borough councillor Nick de Wig- gondene. He told members of Thurnham


Parish Council that the concept of building new housing on one site, with capacity to meet future need, was finding support. He feels the felt the borough


would want to challenge the gov- ernment’s additional housing allo- cation and endeavour to “get away with the lowestnumberof additional housespossible”. On the Leeds-Langley relief road,


atric assessment on admission; a weekly GP “home round”; and en- hanced reviews after hospital at- tendance or admission.


he also felt this was now “likely to happen”, but could open up the area todevelopment. TheLiberalDemocrat-ledadminis-


CCG now good THE annual NHS assessment per- formance now rates the GP-led NHS West Kent Clinical Commis- sioning Group as good. Previously it was assessed as “needs improv- ing”.


tration is under serious pressure to come up with ideas to dealwith the effect on traffic volumes created by 17,600newhomesalreadyintheLocal Plan. MBC claims “modal shift” - en-


couragement to use buses, cycle or walk-willbeenoughtocopewiththe explosion in vehicle numbers , even beforemore houses are imposed.


AWARNING has been given that patients of localGPpractices which do not join the newGPcluster sys- temmaynot receive the same range of services as those who do. It comes from Dr BobBowes, long- standing chairman of the budget- holding GP-led NHS West Kent Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG). So far 75% of about 60 practices in Maidstone and West Kent are in- volved in cluster discussions. The plan is for seven clusters covering central Maidstone (7 practices), East Maidstone (11),Weald (15), Malling


Theatre refurbishment ready for panto season


(6) plus Tonbridge, TunbridgeWells and Sevenoaks. The CCG plans to support prac-


THEHazlitt Theatre inMaidstone is to undergo extensive refurbish- ment this summer. The 350-seat Earl Street venue –


which stages the town’s annual pantomime – needs work com- pleted on its facade and its roof. The work is to be funded by the


GPS are unlikely to prescribe medicines which can be bought from pharmacies, supermarkets and other retailers. Savings will be redirected to other NHS serv- ices.The GP-led budget-holding West Kent CCG has approved the principle of creating a restricted list of over-the-counter medicines that should not be routinely prescribed. The cost of these medicines is esti- mated at more than £2m per year. Patients will also be encouraged to self care for minor ailments and common conditions and seek ad- vice from pharmacists, saving


Prescriptions under review Birth concerns WEST Kent CCG says it has iden- tified an increase in the number of serious incidents reported by Maid- stone and Tunbridge Wells hospi- tals’ maternity department. The department is now being in-


theatre’s landlords andMaidstone Borough Council. The work was scheduled to start


last autumn, but itwas delayed for severalmonthswhile advanced ne- gotiations took place between the various parties. A Hazlitt spokesman said: “The


Hazlitt Theatre, run by Parkwood Creative, is about to embark on a three-month period of extensive external refurbishment. “The project funded by landlords


Mountcharm Group and Maid- stone BoroughCouncilwill see aes- thetic improvements to the facade of the venue as well as much- needed repairs to the roof.” The work is expected to be fin- ished by the time the Hazlitt’s


names for the supporting cast are due to bemade public shortly. The theatre was named after the


about 20% of GP time. These ail- ments include diarrhoea, constipa- tion, athlete’s foot, fever, cold sores, teething, nappy rash, mouth ulcers, haemorrhoids, oral and vaginal thrush, head lice, insect bites and stings, conjunctivitis, contact der- matitis, sore throat, , indigestion and heartburn, ear wax, warts and verrucaes, soft tissue injury, sca- bies, ring worm, mild acne, minor burns and scalds. In a survey 85% of people receiving such free pre- scriptions said they would buy them from a pharmacy if their GP asked them to.


panto run ofAladdin starts on De- cember 1. Starring the comedian andformer


EastEnders star Richard Blackwood (pictured),whowill play theGenie, the showruns untilDecember 31. Last year, the Hazlitt had a suc-


cessful run over the festive period with Cinderella, which starred TV chef and national treasure, Rustie Lee.


famous essayist William Hazlitt, whowas born in the county town in 1778. It opened in the 1950s, but a lot of


the building dates back much fur- ther and some of it has listed status. The venue is home to the Hazlitt


Youth Theatre (HYT), which has performed a string of hit shows in- cluding plays, musicals, new writ- ing, partnership projects, touring shows and awhole lotmore. HYT provides opportunities for


young people aged between six and 18 to put on productions, and to see professional plays.


HAMILTON KITCHENS


Discover our stunning range of contemporary & traditional designs


vestigated in depth. In June, the hospital trust re- ported an increase in Caesarean section births and 3rd/4th degree tear rates. TheCCGsays “further assurance


is required in a number of areas, in- cluding safety and information governance”. The Care Quality Commission is also investigating.


tices to ‘co-operate, collaborate and combine’ to integrate out-of- hospital care and deliver services at scale. Practice mergers could also be supported. The aim is that practices will maintain their identities and re- lationships with their patients. Clusters, with more GPs available,


will offer extended hours (including some weekend work), wider serv- ices, teams of nurses and allied health professionals, co-ordinated care and back office and estate effi-


Health |News downsmail.co.uk


“Richard is a bit of a coup for us and judging by the reaction so far, he is going down verywell. “He is a talented guy who has


been around for a long time in lots of different fields, so his appeal is very broad.” DownsMail understands that the


ciencies. The CCG will also prioritise and consider investment in new prem- ises where there is a need. The CCG says nothing has been defined yet on seven-day 8am-8pm working for practices and there is plenty of scope for collaboration in delivering extended hours. The focus is on consistency for patients and the key area is Saturday morn- ing access. Seven-day service is seen as a ‘natural direction of travel’ but the bestway to deliver for local peo- ple and professionals has still to be decided.


A Hazlitt spokesman said:


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Visit our showroom at Warmlake Business Estate, Maidstone Road, Sutton Valence, Kent ME17 3LQ Maidstone East October 2017


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