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Dismay as care plans pushed through in East Leicestershire

Leicester CHC campaign MND

East Leicestershire and Rutland Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) have confirmed plans to reduce care provided to some of the area’s most vulnerable, including people living with MND.

Together with Spinal Injuries Association, Parkinson’s UK and local groups, the MND Association has warned against plans to limit the amount the CCG is willing to spend on NHS Continuing healthcare (sometimes referred to as ‘CHC’). This funding will now be limited at no more than 10 per cent the cost of the cheapest alternative care setting, such as a nursing or residential home.

As a result, families who are already trying to cope with a devastating disease will now also worry about receiving less care than they need and even being forced into care homes against their will, if their current care packages are deemed too expensive by the CCG on their next review.

In a move welcomed by charities, West Leicestershire and Leicester City CCGs recently agreed to defer a decision on implementing this limit, pending a full impact assessment. However, at its Board meeting on Tuesday this week (8 August), East Leicestershire and Rutland CCG said they consider the policy as good as approved. The only saving grace is that, as a result of pressure, the CCG have delayed implementation slightly. Instead of implementing the policy from the 1 October, an implementation plan will be amended and presented at a public Board meeting in October, effectively delaying the start date.

Our Chief Executive Sally Light said:

“The proposals by East Leicestershire and Rutland CCG seek to limit a patient’s choice of where they live and receive care on purely financial grounds. We’re calling on the CCG to fundamentally rethink their plans. At the very least a full impact assessment is required to adequately understand the implications of what they are proposing before they continue to give severely disabled people uncertainty and stress rather than the care and support they deserve and need.

Sue Browning, Chief Executive Officer of Spinal Injuries Association said:

“Vulnerable people should not be put in this position. These cuts are targeting the most vulnerable, are arbitrary and no justification other than saving money has been provided. The policy should instead have at its heart the need to support the most vulnerable people in society, the most severely disabled.”

Matina Loizou, senior policy and campaigns adviser at Parkinson’s UK and chair of the Continuing Healthcare Alliance, added:

“The CCGs have failed to carry out an adequate impact assessment that considers the views of those affected, opening themselves to a potential legal challenge. The last thing people with Parkinson’s need is the additional stress and uncertainty of battling to get the care they are entitled to. NHS bosses in Leicestershire need to understand the personal impact of their ill-considered proposals.”

For more information about the campaign please contact: Alice Fuller, Campaigns Manager (East) – alice.fuller@mndassociation.org or 0207 250 8452.

Note: If you currently receive NHS continuing healthcare in East Leicestershire or Rutland, nothing will change immediately, and not until at least 1 October. If you’re worried about your care you can contact the MND Connect helpline for advice.

09/08/17

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