On the same page


Working with our staff, patients, stakeholders and local communities, we have made great strides in improving standards of care in all of our hospitals. We’ve seen our CQC rating improve to to be up there with the best in the country and we’ve seen patient outcomes improve as well as reported levels of staff and patient experience. Despite the challenges the whole NHS is facing with recruitment, we continue to have some successes with people choosing to work in our hospitals, and our staff have delivered record levels of cost savings.

However, we still face significant challenges – which we’re calling our ‘hard truths’. These are as follows:

  1. We are spending significant amounts of energy and money on health conditions that are largely preventable - spending on ‘cure’ and ‘follow up’ rather than prevention
  2. We do not have enough permanent staff to deliver all of the current health and care services across Morecambe Bay
  3. The best bed is often your own bed –for some people being in a hospital can lead to a deterioration in health, e.g. muscle wastage
  4. Some people stay in a hospital longer here than the national average
  5. Most people are aware of the financial pressures facing the whole of the NHS. In Morecambe Bay, our Trust and Morecambe Bay Clinical Commissioning Group are now forecasting a combined shortfall of £90 million for next year. The money we receive is no longer sufficient to provide all of the services in the way we do and as a system, we spend money on duplication, bureaucracy, out of date buildings and different buying processes

We’ve been working together with our system partners to look at these and have developed a robust but challenging plan where within five years, we believe that by changing, we can begin to live within our financial means. Such transformation will include some difficult decisions, such as whether or not we continue providing all of the services we do in the way we do and where we do, and cost reduction in some of our non-clinical support services.

Please be assured that the safety of our patients and staff remains our absolute priority. All plans will have high levels of clinical input - both from the hospital and primary care – to make sure that any change will not affect patient safety or quality of care.

We are also continuing to invest where we can and are still committed to recruiting new staff to fill vacancies and ensure we have the right number of staff. We are also looking to invest into capital projects in the next financial year.  

We’ve started to have open and honest conversations with staff and the local communities about the challenges we are facing and their impact on our plans. The ‘On the same page’ sessions we held with staff were to make sure that we are all on the same page about what the future holds. We also went out into nine locations across Morecambe Bay on our ‘chatty van’ with colleagues from Healthwatch Cumbria to talk to the public about the hard truths and our plans to tackle them and to ask them what they think. We will continue to talk with you about this and what it might mean for each of us.

If you have any comments or suggestions, please email us at communications.team@mbht.nhs.uk

Updated November 2018

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