Respite beds 'are not being axed' - pledge

PUBLISHED: 12:58 14 April 2008 | UPDATED: 21:13 26 October 2009

MS sufferer David Davies: ‘I have been left totally in the dark. It has been a very distressing time’

MS sufferer David Davies: ‘I have been left totally in the dark. It has been a very distressing time’

BED-RIDDEN patients who could potentially be innocent victims of plans to axe their care have been reassured they can still count on the NHS. Rumours were rife that NHS bosses were planning to cut the number of beds given to MS sufferers in need of rollin

BED-RIDDEN patients who could potentially be innocent victims of plans to axe their care have been reassured they can still count on the NHS.

Rumours were rife that NHS bosses were planning to cut the number of beds given to MS sufferers in need of rolling respite at Danesbury Home.

This is despite assurances being given by the East and North Herts PCT to the WHT in March that no changes were planned.

Patients had heard the number of beds available at the home would drop from 17 to just six and the amount of weeks available for sufferers to receive respite would also reduce.

MS sufferer David Davies has been receiving rolling respite at the home since 2001, but has been left with an anxious wait to find out if his much-needed care is to continue in years to come.

The Welwyn resident said: "I have been totally left in the dark by the PCT. Nobody at all has contacted me to let me know about my rolling respite, it has been a very distressing time.

"I have heard only six beds have been allocated for rolling respite instead of 17 and this is not enough. It is bad news for all us sufferers, our rolling respite is very much needed."

Welwyn Hatfield MP Grant Shapps has also voiced his concerns over the situation.

He said: "I have written to the PCT and I am anxiously awaiting their response. I am very concerned by this situation and alarm bells are ringing.

"Danesbury is a wonderful care home and we must fight tooth and nail to keep the services continuing there."

However, a spokeswoman for the PCT said: "We have no intentions of reducing the number of rolling respite beds at Danesbury.

"I can only imagine patients have heard rumours of changes at Dansesbury and thought the worse - but in fact we plan to make changes to Dansebury which will further enhance the fantastic facilities we have there.

"The number of beds is certainly not decreasing - although of course, we can never say never."

* Have your say. Email whtimes@archant.co.uk


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