Following on from the Paisley Daily Express and its story about Paisley Maternity and budget being cut, we approached the local MSP George Adam who gave this reply.
George said: ‘There is something far wrong when the Government and the local MSP learn about possible ward closures from Labour MSPs and National newspapers. ‘The Greater Glasgow and Clyde NHS Board have much to answer for, producing a report and seemingly allowing extremely suspect access to it. ‘Proposals to close the children’s ward and Maternity services at the RAH are bad enough but for this information to be passed on to Labour politicians and national newspapers before the Government or local MSP are informed is a damned disgrace.
‘The staff at my local hospital do a tremendous job and for them to be confronted by front pages about possible closures is something that these politicians, and indeed the health board should take time to think about. ‘If these are the facts I am very concerned about how the GGCNHS board are going about their business and I would expect board members to come clean about any such document, including the board member that that leads the Labour controlled council in Renfrewshire.’
Health Secretary Shona Robison said: “This draft discussion paper for the Board’s Directors was written prior to the Scottish Government’s budget being put forward in December, when a substantial increase in NHS funding was announced. “We’ve already substantially increased funding for all health boards, with NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde’s budget increasing by 21.3 per cent under this Government. Since this paper was written a further rise was announced in the draft budget that will give the board a record budget of £2,078.9 million.
“Absolutely none of the points in the paper have been formally put forward for consideration. Any major service change would need approval from the Scottish Government and we’ve received no requests from the board. “We’re clear with health boards that they need to design services that meet the needs of the local population. We have been consistently clear that we are committed to maintaining and improving services at both the Royal Alexandra Hospital and Vale of Leven – for example, including sustaining emergency services at the Vale. “In this context, all boards, like all public sector organisations are expected to ensure they run services as efficiently as possible.
Health boards are able to reinvest all money they save into front line services. “We are also conscious that we need to up the pace on transferring services to the community as we push forward the radical integration of health and social care.
That is exactly why we are investing some £250 million in this area in next year’s budget – of which Glasgow will receive their proportionate share.”