I welcome services returning to Crawley Hospital, a stark contrast to the previous decade where we lost our maternity unit in 2001 and A&E department in 2005.
Emergency services are now returning to Crawley Hospital with the Urgent Treatment Centre now able to see the majority of cases an A&E can 24 hours a day, seven days a week, all year round.
In 2017, Crawley Hospital saw the opening of a new Clinical Assessment Unit (CAU) and the new 26 bed Piper Ward, as part of the Crawley Clinical Commissioning Group’s work to improve urgent care in our town.
The new CAU has a large reception and waiting area, six assessment trollies and four treatment chairs, three consultation rooms and a discharge area for patients awaiting transport back home.
This facility provides rapid assessment and treatment for a number of conditions which do not need admission to an acute hospital including chest infections, breathing problems, asthma attacks, falls, severe headaches, urinary tract infections and non-passing of urine, stomach pains, diarrhoea, vomiting, deep venous thrombosis (DVT) and cellulitis.
The new and extended CAU will treat more patients in a modern environment closer to home.
The dementia-friendly Piper Ward has also opened. I visited Crawley Hospital while this work was taking place previously and was struck by the care shown by the lead architect in ensuring a more pleasant experience for patients in every way possible.
The Conservative Government has confirmed its commitment to deliver the biggest cash boost ever for the NHS. £33.9 billion more will be provided for the NHS by 2023-24, with an initial £6.2 billion increase this year.
£2.3 billion of the £33.9 billion funding boost for the NHS will be spent on mental health services – improving services with a focus on prevention, community services and young people.
The NHS workforce is also being supported to continue delivering world class care. The Government have announced a £210 million funding boost for frontline NHS staff, including a £1,000 personal development budget for every nurse, midwife and allied health professional to support delivery of our NHS Long Term Plan.
There are already over 17,100 more doctors than in May 2010, and over 16,900 more nurses on our wards.
As Blood Cancer All-Party Parliamentary Group Chair I led a House of Commons debate on blood cancer in November 2018 where I called for earlier diagnosis of patients. The NHS Long-Term Plan outlines the ambition that by 2028, three quarters of cancer patients will be diagnosed at an early stage.
In January 2019 the Surrey & Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust was judged as Outstanding by the Care Quality Commission, and new analysis from the Teenage Cancer Trust has confirmed that Surrey and Sussex is one of five Cancer Alliance areas where five-year cancer survival of 13-24 year olds improved significantly from 2001-05 to 2007-11.
It is right that mental health is being treated on a par with physical health, with Crawley schools to take part in a pilot programme where new specialist Mental Health Support Teams will work alongside school counsellors and provide one-to-one support to pupils. This collaborative approach between West Sussex County Council, the Crawley Clinical Commissioning Group and the NHS is to be welcomed.
I continue to pursue local service provision with the Government; indeed I raised the issue of GP access in Crawley in the Commons on Boris Johnson’s first full day as Prime Minister.
There can be no complacency, which is why it is important we are seeing record investment in our National Health Service.