3:08pm Tuesday 22nd October 2013
HEALTH chiefs have pledged to heal the wounds after being forced to admit an embarrassing communications breakdown over changes in physiotherapy services in the Dudley borough.
Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust has admitted altering provision in north Dudley without telling the Dudley Clinical Commissioning Group which pays the trust to provide the service.
CCG bosses, who insisted there had been no changes, were left red-faced after being kept in the dark.
The group’s chief accountable officer Paul Maubach said: “There is a clear requirement that any changes which affect patient care must be discussed with, and approved by, us before they are made.
"Discussions were already under way with Dudley Group about a wider review aimed at improving community physiotherapy services across the borough.
“However, it appears that these local service changes were made before we, or the people directly affected, could be consulted on them and this is extremely disappointing.
"Our efforts now are focussed on discussing with Dudley Group colleagues what action might be required on the affected services and how any breakdown in communications between our organisations can be avoided in future.”
Dudley Conservative leader, Councillor Patrick Harley, blasted the CCG for not knowing about changes, which he said meant many patients had further to travel, as small clinics were relocated in bigger centres.
Trust chief executive, Paula Clark, who said the changes had cut waiting times for appointments from eight weeks to two, added: “We acknowledge these changes should have been communicated better and were not communicated to the CCG by ourselves.”
Consultations will be held with GPS and patients over separate plans by the trust to cut the number of clinic locations from 19 to eight across the borough to offer an improved service with more appointment slots.
© Copyright 2001-2013 Newsquest Media Group