27 February 2023

Local GP, Dr Julian Povey, who was also the Joint Chair of the former Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) is supporting plans that will improve hospital care for everyone in Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin and mid Wales.

The Hospitals Transformation Programme is working to put in place new ways of delivering care as consulted on during NHS Future Fit (2018) and agreed and confirmed through independent review, that will improve hospital services by changing the way care is delivered across two, thriving hospital sites.

Dr Povey welcomes the plans as a vital step towards delivering the right care for all patients. The changes will streamline services, meaning that patients will receive testing, diagnosis, and treatment faster, benefiting both planned and urgent care.

He said, “As a clinician, high quality, safe care is my key priority and these plans will mean patients are seen, diagnosed and treated in our hospitals faster – whether that’s after a referral from primary care, as part of ongoing treatment or in an emergency situation.

“I’ve been involved in these plans since the development of Future Fit and they are just one part of our aim as clinicians working locally to make sure our health and care services deliver the highest quality care for our local population and their needs.

“Ideally, we would keep as many people as possible out of hospital by focusing on keeping them well, but when people do need hospital services, whether that is in an emergency, for maternity care, planned operations or treatment for cancer, we need these services to be the best they can be.”

The plans, which are set to be submitted for final national approval in the early summer will see the creation of a dedicated planned care site at the Princess Royal Hospital in Telford, which will reduce delays to planned procedures by having dedicated space, teams and specialties available all year round, minimising any impact caused by emergency admissions or winter viruses.

Royal Shrewsbury Hospital (RSH) site will specialise in emergency care, with a purpose-developed Emergency Department, co-located with specialist medical and surgical specialties, for adults and children across Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin and mid Wales.

Both will provide 24-hour enhanced urgent care services, delivered through an A&E Local model in Telford, which Dr Povey welcomes as particularly benefitting elderly patients. He continued:

“I look forward to the development of enhanced urgent care services across the region which will include closer working with primary and community care teams to see, diagnose and treat as many people as possible on the same day, without the need for a hospital admission which, for elderly people often results in a loss of independence or a deterioration in their condition.”

In addition to urgent care services, both sites will provide a wide range of support services including testing (diagnostics such as X-rays), outpatients appointments and chemotherapy. These services will also improve accessibility and support early diagnosis and treatment.

Finally, Dr Povey said, “We need these changes to happen and I am excited about the stage we are at as well as the next steps and what they mean for patient care. I’m glad that people are also able to get involved in the development of our services and encourage anyone who is interested to find out more.”

NHS Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin have launched a Big Health and Wellbeing Conversation which is asking people to share what is affecting their health and wellbeing and what things would make the biggest difference to improve the experience of local health and care services. Between March and May 2023, a number of community listening events are being held.  Find out more here: www.nhsbigconversation.org

For specific updates on the Hospitals Transformation Programme, please register as a Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust community member here: Community Member Sign Up Page – SaTH.