Royal Bolton Hospital ward B3 closed as bosses slash £800,000 from budget in latest round of cuts

The Royal Bolton Hospital

The Royal Bolton Hospital

First published in News
Last updated
The Bolton News: Photograph of the Author by , health reporter

A HOSPITAL ward has been permanently closed in the latest cost-cutting move at the Royal Bolton.

Hospital chiefs insist the closure of 28 beds will speed up the assessment and discharge of patients — but staff say wards are already stretched to full capacity.

The closure of B3 ward will save the Bolton NHS Foundation Trust £800,000 a year, with some of the savings being invested in new assessment services.

The ward was used for mainly elderly patients with “complex” care needs, such as diabetes.

Twelve beds were part of the temporary winter ward due to shut this summer, meaning there is an overall reduction of 16 beds.

More ward closures are expected later this year as part of the government’s plan to downsize hospitals and provide more care in the community — a rapid shift that has been described as “breathtaking” by council chiefs.

Hospital staff have questioned why they were not consulted about the move.

In a leaked message from the Bolton NHS Foundation Trust’s intranet site, one member of staff wrote: “I have two questions. Why are the wards being closed and why has there been no discussion with staff or patients regarding the closures?

“Surely at a time when bed capacity is at its limit, it seems like an unthought- through plan.”

Ddirectors at the Trust, which runs the Royal Bolton Hospital, say the closure will reduce assessment time from 48 to about four hours, thanks to the improved frailty unit.

The average cost of running a ward is about £1 million a year and the Trust will invest £200,000 in improving patient assessment services, such as more occupational therapists and physiotherapists.

The cost to the community teams and GP practices is not yet known.

Andy Ennis, chief operating officer at the Trust, said: “The Trust has been looking at reducing the capacity at the hospital through a number of initiatives which will mean fewer beds are needed.

“Reducing unnecessary length of stay, better discharge planning and better infection control are all involved with this, which will also reduce costs whilst maintaining or improving quality and safety.

“This fits in with the national direction of travel to have smaller hospitals and more care in the community.”

In April, the hospital recorded its worst A&E performances in a year, with more patients being admitted than discharged.

Mr Ennis said the closure will provide more “flexibility” during busy periods at the hospital.

He also insisted patient safety would not be compromised and no jobs would be lost.

He added: “We are focusing on the quality of services. It’s about improving the care of patients and making sure they are seen by the right people at the right time.

“This is not about simply patients out of the hospital and into the community. We will have more occupational therapists and therapists to help reduce an unnecessary long length of stay.”

Health and social care is set to be transformed in Bolton this year, with hospital resources being shifted into the community.

Most healthcare providers in Bolton agree integration is “the way forward”, yet the speed at which the government is expecting local authorities and NHS groups to roll out changes has been cited as a concern.

Cllr Linda Thomas, deputy leader of Bolton Council and chairman of the Health and Wellbeing Board, said: “As the cuts from central government continue to bite into the NHS and local government, we are having to work in a more integrated way to mitigate the situation.

“The speed we are expected to deliver integration has been breathtaking.

“Our concerns are that reductions in beds do not compromise quality patient care.

“As with all the services we need to be sure that all the new integrated services are embedded and delivering.

“The Royal Bolton have to play their part by making changes internally, but we will need to closely monitor the effects of bed closures and be assured that care is not compromised.”

Su Long, chief officer at NHS Bolton Clinical Commissioning Group, added: “We are aware of Bolton Foundation Trust’s plans to reduce beds due to internal efficiencies they are making.

“NHS Bolton Clinical Commissioning Group has a duty to the people of Bolton to work with the trust to ensure these plans do not cause any deterioration to the quality of patient care.”

Hospital beds in numbers

  • There are about 768 hospital beds at the Royal Bolton and more than 35 wards.
  • The average cost of running a ward is £1 million a year.
  • Between 50 and 70 patients are admitted to hospital every day.
  • The Bolton NHS Foudation Trust must save £73 million over the next five years.

Comments (10)

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12:33pm Fri 23 May 14

Andyroost says...

Welcome to going private, won't be long before you don't have a choice, we don't have funds to give to our hospitals but we can welcome immigrants with all the handouts who have never paid a penny tax to support our country, we are sinking rapid, vote these clowns out, Get the army back guarding our own borders and shut all the gates, cut the red tape and kick out the scroungers, at least it would be a start.
Welcome to going private, won't be long before you don't have a choice, we don't have funds to give to our hospitals but we can welcome immigrants with all the handouts who have never paid a penny tax to support our country, we are sinking rapid, vote these clowns out, Get the army back guarding our own borders and shut all the gates, cut the red tape and kick out the scroungers, at least it would be a start. Andyroost
  • Score: 24

12:52pm Fri 23 May 14

filthy6 says...

Andyroost wrote:
Welcome to going private, won't be long before you don't have a choice, we don't have funds to give to our hospitals but we can welcome immigrants with all the handouts who have never paid a penny tax to support our country, we are sinking rapid, vote these clowns out, Get the army back guarding our own borders and shut all the gates, cut the red tape and kick out the scroungers, at least it would be a start.
The only immigrants should be servant types, all those unempolyed or on benefits should be shipped to independant Scotland & bring back the poorhouse
[quote][p][bold]Andyroost[/bold] wrote: Welcome to going private, won't be long before you don't have a choice, we don't have funds to give to our hospitals but we can welcome immigrants with all the handouts who have never paid a penny tax to support our country, we are sinking rapid, vote these clowns out, Get the army back guarding our own borders and shut all the gates, cut the red tape and kick out the scroungers, at least it would be a start.[/p][/quote]The only immigrants should be servant types, all those unempolyed or on benefits should be shipped to independant Scotland & bring back the poorhouse filthy6
  • Score: -10

1:15pm Fri 23 May 14

danssoncabaret says...

We've just gained 2 more Clowns. UKIP.
We've just gained 2 more Clowns. UKIP. danssoncabaret
  • Score: -54

1:36pm Fri 23 May 14

Puffin-Billy says...

Cllr Linda Thomas, deputy leader of Bolton Council and chairman of the Health and Wellbeing Board, said: “As the cuts from central government continue to bite into the NHS and local government, we are having to work in a more integrated way to mitigate the situation.

More damned hypocrisy, and mealy - mouthed claptrap from the Labour Party who have betrayed the NHS and the people of Bolton.

Cllr Thomas should be speaking out against the privatisation of the NHS, not facilitating its destruction.

A member of staff wrote:

“I have two questions. Why are the wards being closed and why has there been no discussion with staff or patients regarding the closures?

And Dr. Wirin Bhatiani replied:

"Ah yes, of course; you mean the discussions / consultation / phone - ins etc etc... to which I referred at 12:18pm on Monday 12th August 2013 in the Bolton News, when I said we can’t do this alone. We need everyone to get involved and play their part in making these important decisions.”

Nah you didn't really believe that load of old cobblers, do you? "

For "Health and social care is set to be transformed in Bolton this year, with hospital resources being shifted into the community. read
"Kiss good bye to the NHS in Bolton , and say Hello to Privatisation".


Do you remember all that nonsense on Victoria Square last year - so called "celebrating" the birthday of the NHS?

It was nothing of the kind.

It was a bulls8 excercise in which a gullible public were led to believe that the CCGs had the interests of the NHS in Bolton at heart.

It is the purpose of the CCGs and Monitor to enforce competition to eventually privatise all aspects of the NHS.

Until the citizens of Bolton stop believing the ever growing volume of propaganda and lies being pumped out by Bolton CCG in these pages, and all the other CCGs around the country, we will continue to lose NHS facilities, such as NHS mental health, NHS maternity , and they will gradually be farmed out to private suppliers.

These links especially the first one will give you more idea of what Bolton CCG intends for our NHS.


http://www.ccgwatch.

org.uk/urgent-mid-st

affs-nhs-administrat

ors-pushing-privatis

ation/


http://www.hsj.co.uk

/news/commissioning/

ccg-backs-down-in-pa

tient-involvement-pr

ocurement-row/506717

0.article#.UxSAiIWsD

zE

http://www.hsj.co.uk

/hsj-local/community

-providers/cambridge

shire-community-serv

ices-nhs-trust/commu

nity-services-launch

es-fresh-bid-for
Cllr Linda Thomas, deputy leader of Bolton Council and chairman of the Health and Wellbeing Board, said: “As the cuts from central government continue to bite into the NHS and local government, we are having to work in a more integrated way to mitigate the situation. More damned hypocrisy, and mealy - mouthed claptrap from the Labour Party who have betrayed the NHS and the people of Bolton. Cllr Thomas should be speaking out against the privatisation of the NHS, not facilitating its destruction. A member of staff wrote: “I have two questions. Why are the wards being closed and why has there been no discussion with staff or patients regarding the closures? And Dr. Wirin Bhatiani replied: "Ah yes, of course; you mean the discussions / consultation / phone - ins etc etc... to which I referred at 12:18pm on Monday 12th August 2013 in the Bolton News, when I said we can’t do this alone. We need everyone to get involved and play their part in making these important decisions.” Nah you didn't really believe that load of old cobblers, do you? " For "Health and social care is set to be transformed in Bolton this year, with hospital resources being shifted into the community. read "Kiss good bye to the NHS in Bolton , and say Hello to Privatisation". Do you remember all that nonsense on Victoria Square last year - so called "celebrating" the birthday of the NHS? It was nothing of the kind. It was a bulls8 excercise in which a gullible public were led to believe that the CCGs had the interests of the NHS in Bolton at heart. It is the purpose of the CCGs and Monitor to enforce competition to eventually privatise all aspects of the NHS. Until the citizens of Bolton stop believing the ever growing volume of propaganda and lies being pumped out by Bolton CCG in these pages, and all the other CCGs around the country, we will continue to lose NHS facilities, such as NHS mental health, NHS maternity , and they will gradually be farmed out to private suppliers. These links especially the first one will give you more idea of what Bolton CCG intends for our NHS. http://www.ccgwatch. org.uk/urgent-mid-st affs-nhs-administrat ors-pushing-privatis ation/ http://www.hsj.co.uk /news/commissioning/ ccg-backs-down-in-pa tient-involvement-pr ocurement-row/506717 0.article#.UxSAiIWsD zE http://www.hsj.co.uk /hsj-local/community -providers/cambridge shire-community-serv ices-nhs-trust/commu nity-services-launch es-fresh-bid-for Puffin-Billy
  • Score: 13

2:13pm Fri 23 May 14

Puffin-Billy says...

* "There are about 768 hospital beds at the Royal Bolton and more than 35 wards"
..................Bu
t because NHS Bolton Clinical Commissioning Group, working in partnership with Bolton NHS Foundation Trust need to conform to the wishes of the politician's pals in private healthcare, private insurance, and the financial consultancy firms , they are reducing the number of beds.

*"The average cost of running a ward is £1 million a year."
.................And that's far to much money to ask wealthy taxpayers to pay in these times of crippling austerity, so we won't be having the minimum number of nurse to each bed, as recommended by the RCN - they don't know what they're talking about anyway - Jeremy Hunt sez so.

**Between 50 and 70 patients are admitted to hospital every day".
....................
.. And a lot of 'em are just a bunch of old **** who don't contribute much to society, except for buying beer and fags. In fact they're nothing but a drain on the NHS bleeding it dry, and blocking NHS beds when they could be doing something useful like filling the pockets of private nursing home owners.

*"The Bolton NHS Foundation Trust must save £73 million over the next five years."
...............MUST?
....................
....Who sez they must? Oh yes of course, McKinsey and all their pals in the UK Government. £20 Billion nationally - all by 2015.
Better get rid of some NHS beds and kick the old **** out, keep 'em quiet by fillin' 'em full of pills..........my mate owns a pharmacy company - got it sorted.
* "There are about 768 hospital beds at the Royal Bolton and more than 35 wards" ..................Bu t because NHS Bolton Clinical Commissioning Group, working in partnership with Bolton NHS Foundation Trust need to conform to the wishes of the politician's pals in private healthcare, private insurance, and the financial consultancy firms , they are reducing the number of beds. *"The average cost of running a ward is £1 million a year." .................And that's far to much money to ask wealthy taxpayers to pay in these times of crippling austerity, so we won't be having the minimum number of nurse to each bed, as recommended by the RCN - they don't know what they're talking about anyway - Jeremy Hunt sez so. **Between 50 and 70 patients are admitted to hospital every day". .................... .. And a lot of 'em are just a bunch of old **** who don't contribute much to society, except for buying beer and fags. In fact they're nothing but a drain on the NHS bleeding it dry, and blocking NHS beds when they could be doing something useful like filling the pockets of private nursing home owners. *"The Bolton NHS Foundation Trust must save £73 million over the next five years." ...............MUST? .................... ....Who sez they must? Oh yes of course, McKinsey and all their pals in the UK Government. £20 Billion nationally - all by 2015. Better get rid of some NHS beds and kick the old **** out, keep 'em quiet by fillin' 'em full of pills..........my mate owns a pharmacy company - got it sorted. Puffin-Billy
  • Score: 2

2:29pm Fri 23 May 14

filthy6 says...

Basically dodn't get ill & don't get old - or if you do hope you are a wealthy banker/stockbroker who's squirrelled away loads of tax free £'s.
Basically dodn't get ill & don't get old - or if you do hope you are a wealthy banker/stockbroker who's squirrelled away loads of tax free £'s. filthy6
  • Score: -36

7:08pm Fri 23 May 14

Comment777 says...

danssoncabaret wrote:
We've just gained 2 more Clowns. UKIP.
Two so called clowns whom can see what is happening to society...It is you whom is the comical entertainer
[quote][p][bold]danssoncabaret[/bold] wrote: We've just gained 2 more Clowns. UKIP.[/p][/quote]Two so called clowns whom can see what is happening to society...It is you whom is the comical entertainer Comment777
  • Score: 32

9:23pm Fri 23 May 14

Mick England says...

So because of Cliffords 5 million clanger, we screw the vulnerable but offer the best service for the ever increasing maternity ward? Good to see that the fat controller is looking after his future votes!
So because of Cliffords 5 million clanger, we screw the vulnerable but offer the best service for the ever increasing maternity ward? Good to see that the fat controller is looking after his future votes! Mick England
  • Score: 7

8:14am Sat 24 May 14

Gotmeouttathere says...

Quote: "Trust will invest £200,000 in improving patient assessment services, such as more occupational therapists and physiotherapists." Laughable...........
how many physios and OTs will you get for 200k? How many of them will work nights, weekends, Bank Holidays? Get patients assessed in 4 hours...............
.......yeah right!! When you can't get an URGENT assessment of patients with severe chest problems "out of hours" as the physios only work 9-5 Monday to Friday!! Treat more people in the community? What, when community beds have closed quicker than NHS beds? Hence the number of patients who stay in hospital for un-necessary lengths of time. These "bean counters" actually need to roll their sleeves up and do the job for 12 months, do a good old UK winter on the front line, struggle to find beds for vulnerable poorly people, explain to relatives just why their nearest and dearest has been "shipped" from an A&E TROLLEY to an assessment TROLLEY in another area of the hospital, instead of being put in a ward BED!! Basically fiddling the 4 hour A&E targets.............
....thankfully I no longer have that on my conscience, retirement could not have come at a better time. My heart goes out to all the patients being treated as a number, the staff who have to tolerate second rate care, whilst striving to give their best and all the politics they battle each and every day.
Quote: "Trust will invest £200,000 in improving patient assessment services, such as more occupational therapists and physiotherapists." Laughable........... how many physios and OTs will you get for 200k? How many of them will work nights, weekends, Bank Holidays? Get patients assessed in 4 hours............... .......yeah right!! When you can't get an URGENT assessment of patients with severe chest problems "out of hours" as the physios only work 9-5 Monday to Friday!! Treat more people in the community? What, when community beds have closed quicker than NHS beds? Hence the number of patients who stay in hospital for un-necessary lengths of time. These "bean counters" actually need to roll their sleeves up and do the job for 12 months, do a good old UK winter on the front line, struggle to find beds for vulnerable poorly people, explain to relatives just why their nearest and dearest has been "shipped" from an A&E TROLLEY to an assessment TROLLEY in another area of the hospital, instead of being put in a ward BED!! Basically fiddling the 4 hour A&E targets............. ....thankfully I no longer have that on my conscience, retirement could not have come at a better time. My heart goes out to all the patients being treated as a number, the staff who have to tolerate second rate care, whilst striving to give their best and all the politics they battle each and every day. Gotmeouttathere
  • Score: 11

7:13pm Sat 24 May 14

Puffin-Billy says...

There are none so blind as those who will not see.

The decimation of the NHS is happening all over the country.

Neo liberalism is the name of the disease which is deliberately ruining our healthcare system.

In the United States there are 10 times as many mentally ill people in prisons as there are in hospitals - a shocking statistic that one would associate with a third world country - and it’s starting to happen here with cuts to NHS mental health beds. Meanwhile the United States likes to lecture the world about the value of human rights.

In Britain, 35% of adults with anxiety or diagnosable depression are not in contact with mental health services; the figure is 76% for children aged five to 15.

Only 6% of spending on mental health goes on services aimed at children and young people, even though 50% of lifetime mental illness starts by the age of 14.

Many GP practises are sacking experienced nurses because they are deemed too expensive.

In Corby, the private company which is owned by the same GPs who make up the CCG and which now owns all Primary Healthcare delivery for around 70,000 people, sacked its entire staff of private-company supplied nurses when Corby Lakeside Plus Company Ltd, (as it was then) was put into administration (very quietly) at the start of 2013.

Here's what South Teesside CCG is up to in East Cleveland.

- They have withdrawn funding or their local GP Practise which is now closing.

- They have withdrawn funding for their Walk-In Clinic which is now closing

- They have withdrawn funding for the Minor Injuries Unit which is two miles away and which is now closing.

- They have withdrawn funding for their nearest stroke unit which is now closing

- They have reduced funding to their nearest Urgent Care Unit in Redcar.

"Urgent" is now classified as you must have a pre-booked appointment. Appointments are allocated by the "111" service who now operate an "urgent" callback service....."urgent" being 5 hours.

- Essentially, the mantra once again is "Go to A&E"

Dan Poulter assured the public that Lansley's reforms, in which Poulter was a key player, would massively improve healthcare. He was of course, like David Cameron, lying.

Health Minister Dan Poulter is refusing to meet local representatives to discuss the funding crisis - a crisis which is being deliberately induced - a crisis for which the default remedy will be massive privatisation.

If the BMA had any cojones they would strike Poulter off.

In April, 2015 the NHS will loose £2bn to local government "Health and Wellbeing" Boards and local clinical commissioning groups (CCGs), as part of the £20 Billion cuts recommended by Mckinsey - money which will be siphoned off into private health facilities.
There are none so blind as those who will not see. The decimation of the NHS is happening all over the country. Neo liberalism is the name of the disease which is deliberately ruining our healthcare system. In the United States there are 10 times as many mentally ill people in prisons as there are in hospitals - a shocking statistic that one would associate with a third world country - and it’s starting to happen here with cuts to NHS mental health beds. Meanwhile the United States likes to lecture the world about the value of human rights. In Britain, 35% of adults with anxiety or diagnosable depression are not in contact with mental health services; the figure is 76% for children aged five to 15. Only 6% of spending on mental health goes on services aimed at children and young people, even though 50% of lifetime mental illness starts by the age of 14. Many GP practises are sacking experienced nurses because they are deemed too expensive. In Corby, the private company which is owned by the same GPs who make up the CCG and which now owns all Primary Healthcare delivery for around 70,000 people, sacked its entire staff of private-company supplied nurses when Corby Lakeside Plus Company Ltd, (as it was then) was put into administration (very quietly) at the start of 2013. Here's what South Teesside CCG is up to in East Cleveland. - They have withdrawn funding or their local GP Practise which is now closing. - They have withdrawn funding for their Walk-In Clinic which is now closing - They have withdrawn funding for the Minor Injuries Unit which is two miles away and which is now closing. - They have withdrawn funding for their nearest stroke unit which is now closing - They have reduced funding to their nearest Urgent Care Unit in Redcar. "Urgent" is now classified as you must have a pre-booked appointment. Appointments are allocated by the "111" service who now operate an "urgent" callback service....."urgent" being 5 hours. - Essentially, the mantra once again is "Go to A&E" Dan Poulter assured the public that Lansley's reforms, in which Poulter was a key player, would massively improve healthcare. He was of course, like David Cameron, lying. Health Minister Dan Poulter is refusing to meet local representatives to discuss the funding crisis - a crisis which is being deliberately induced - a crisis for which the default remedy will be massive privatisation. If the BMA had any cojones they would strike Poulter off. In April, 2015 the NHS will loose £2bn to local government "Health and Wellbeing" Boards and local clinical commissioning groups (CCGs), as part of the £20 Billion cuts recommended by Mckinsey - money which will be siphoned off into private health facilities. Puffin-Billy
  • Score: 3

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