*** DEBUG START ***
*** DEBUG END ***
Important information: We are currently experiencing technical issues with the webiste and it is currently running with reduced functionality, some category pages may not contain a full list of articles and the search is not currently working. We apologise for the inconvenience and should have everything back to normal as soon as possible.

Stop using Stafford Hospital as 'political football' says bishop

by
26 April 2013

by a staff reporter

PA

Banded together: about 30,000 demonstrators rally in support of Stafford Hospital in Stafford town centre on Saturday

Banded together: about 30,000 demonstrators rally in support of Stafford Hospital in Stafford town centre on Saturday

THE Bishop of Stafford, the Rt Revd Geoff Annas, has called on the Government to stop using the town's hospital as a "political football". The hospital had become a "byword for all that is wrong with the NHS", he told protesters.

Stafford Hospital has been placed into administration after a public inquiry found that it had provided "appalling" standards of care over a five-year period, up to 2009. Plans have been announced to downgrade the hospital, removing accident and emergency, acute, and maternity services.

More than 30,000 people turned out in support of the hospital at the weekend. Speaking at the march, Bishop Annas said: "We all know the terrible and tragic things that have happened in this hospital that were highlighted by the Francis report.

"Of course our sympathies go to all who believe that their relatives died unnecessarily. They are very much in our thoughts this afternoon. . . Having said that, this appalling situation was not the fault of the people of Stafford. So why should we be being penalised? . . .

"Rather than build on the excellent work that is done here, and invest in this hospital and make it into that centre of excellence that we want it to be, that we know it can be, it seems as if there are certain people who want to continue to make Stafford a byword for everything that is wrong with the NHS.

"I deplore the way that this fine town and county is being besmirched by those who constantly refer to what has happened here, even if reporting on problems in hospitals hundreds of miles away."

The BBC reported on Wednesday that Stafford Borough Council was instructing the hospital to make a formal complaint of misconduct to the Crown Prosecution Service, against the chairman and the chief executive of the hospital.
 

Nurses attack 'stupid' plan

The Royal College of Nursing has attacked a government plan that would require trainee nurses to work as health-care assistants for a year, branding it "stupid" at a time when nurses were already overstretched.

A survey found that 71 per cent of 2000 senior nurses said that they were not confident that staffing levels were always adequate.

The Prime Minister defended the proposal, however. He said that it was "absolutely vital" to get the quality of care right in hospitals.

Forthcoming Events

29 September 2020
Festival of Preaching
A one-day online version of our popular preaching festival. With Mark Oakley, Sam Wells and Anna Carter Florence.   Book tickets

 

19 October 2020
Creativity out of crisis: Hymns and worship webinar
In association with RSCM, this online event will explore creative uses music and liturgy in the context online and socially distanced worship.    Book tickets

Welcome to the Church Times

​To explore the Church Times website fully, please sign in or subscribe.

Non-subscribers can read four articles for free each month. (You will need to register.)