Get NHS back on its feet

Doncaster Royal Infirmary remains 'incredibly busy' health bosses have said.Doncaster Royal Infirmary remains 'incredibly busy' health bosses have said.
Doncaster Royal Infirmary remains 'incredibly busy' health bosses have said.
Before we think about a new hospital let’s get our NHS back on its feet.

Over the Christmas period I had to take my two-year-old grandson to Doncaster Royal Infirmary. We arrived at about 10 o’clock in the evening. As we walked into a packed A&E a nurse came out to tell the crowd that there was a waiting time of seven hours with only one doctor on duty.

After an initial diagnosis we were directed to the Urgent Treatment Centre. The scene that confronted us was shocking.

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All the seats were taken. Women were sitting on the floor cradling children, many of whom were crying.

Our NHS is clearly broken. It is failing to meet basic health care requirements.

And yet, on the walls of the crowded corridors are posters telling us how well the Doncaster and Bassetlaw NHS Trust is doing.

I had our experience in mind when I read a report on MP Nick Fletcher’s Facebook post, telling us how he had an “Excellent meeting with DRI’s CEO, Richard Parker” about the prospects of a new hospital for Doncaster, “that isn’t going to happen overnight”.

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The real issues confronting NHS users in Doncaster are being glossed over by a promise of a shiny new hospital.

There are things that do need to happen overnight, and that should happen overnight. What should happen overnight is to recruit more doctors and nurses so that patients are not sitting in A&E overnight.

That’s why, unlike Nick Fletcher, I heartily congratulate all our public sector workers who are striking for decent pay. That will help to retain and recruit the staff we need.

If there is a billion pounds to spend on healthcare in Doncaster, as Nick Fletcher says, then let the frontline healthcare providers allocate it to meet our needs.

John Westmoreland

Doncaster People’s Assembly