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Inaccurate media reporting about the future of Bedford Hospital’s Services

Stephen Conroy, Chief Executive, Bedford Hospital NHS Trust said, “You may have recently seen a number of media reports relating to the future of Bedford Hospital. These have been on the back of the recent publication of the Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs). Plans to date are all publicly available.

The reporting contains a number of inaccuracies and misleading messages and I would like to reassure and clarify to the public that no decision about any service delivered at the three Acute Trusts involved in the STP, which includes Bedford Hospital, has been made nor will any decision be made without full staff/public involvement and consultation. Indeed the plans make no reference at all of changes to any services at the three hospitals. We have also said on a number of occasions that ‘working together’ and sharing some back office or support functions does not equate to hospital mergers.

Stephen continues, “This persistent misreporting, even after plans have been published, is causing wholly unnecessary anxiety for local people and for staff, including on our ability to recruit new staff. We will be working hard with STP colleagues to ensure we get clear, consistent information out to local people to ensure they are well informed and can get involved in how health and social care services are designed and delivered in the future.”

The more detailed planning that will arise from the STPs will take place over the coming months and it is the intention of the Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes (BLMK) STP to keep the public informed and engaged at every necessary step. The public summary of the BLMK STP can be found at www.blmkstp.co.uk/publications