Councillor Jocelynne Scutt, Labour’s County Councillor for West Chesterton, who has been campaigning with residents Kelley Green and Elisa Meschini against the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) proposals to relocate the Out of Hours Service from Union Lane Chesterton, has said that the measures proposed to lessen the impact are inadequate and hastily cobbled together.. She called on the CCG Board to reject the proposals when they meet to consider them in Chatteris.

Councillor Scutt said: ” It was bad enough that the County Health Committee simply nodded through the plans last week without even knowing what the CCG proposed to do to ensure residents in the highly deprived wards north of the city who need the Out of Hours service aren’t disadvantaged by a move to Addenbrookes. The CCG then published its mitigation measures over the weekend and it is clear they have been cobbled together in an effort to address the serious concerns raised by councillors and residents over the last few weeks.”

Councillor Scutt added: “If the move goes ahead, those living in very deprived areas of the city will face having to pay to park at Addenbrookes and the proposal to cap the charge at £3.50 fails to understand that for families counting every penny, £3.50 can be a large part of their daily budget. Getting a bus or taxi will be even more expensive. Trying to claim any help with travel costs is a bureaucratic process after the event and currently the government guidance for schemes for this actually excludes Out of Hours services.

The CCG also give a vague commitment to ‘look into’ asking local GPs to open until 8 pm but GP practices are already under immense pressure and this would just increase that.  The simple fact is that the CCG should have published its proposed mitigation measures as part of the consultation so that they could be properly examined.  Its failure to do this further highlights how flawed the consultation was.  When the CCG Board meet today they should reject this proposal and tell the CCG it needs to do a far better job in the future.”

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