Council Wants Answers Over Health Cuts

Health Secretary Patricia Hewitt has been given a wake-up call by community health watchdogs demanding to know what she will do about proposed mental health cuts. Cambridgeshire County Council wants the Government to stop dragging its feet over the £3 million cuts which include scrapping the young people’s service and closing hospital beds and day centre services. It asked the Government to respond five months ago and now councillors have written to Ms Hewitt demanding an answer.

Coun John Reynolds, deputy council leader, said: “The council is concerned and disappointed there has as yet been no response from the Secretary of State to this referral which was made five months ago.

“Given that the outcome will have an impact on vulnerable service users and their carers, and that the issue is of considerable local public concern, the council would expect a swifter response. The council is requesting that a response is made as soon as possible.”

The cuts are being made by Cambridge City and South Cambridgeshire PCTs. But the Cambridgeshire health and adult social care scrutiny committee opposes the plans and refer the PCT proposals to the Department of Health in a bid to force a rethink.