Sheffield MP attacks health bosses over care of dementia patients

Clive Betts, MP for Sheffield South East
Clive Betts, MP for Sheffield South East

A MP say health bosses are causing great distress to elderly dementia patients by moving them from their Sheffield nursing home.

Clive Betts, MP for Sheffield South East, met with NHS Sheffield Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) in March to discuss Woodland View nursing home in Norton but has received little information since then.

The CCG is reducing the number of beds at Woodland View from 45 to 30 but says there are no plans to close the home and no residents will be moved from a long-term bed. The CCG says it provides care in the home and community, preventing the need for nursing home beds in some cases.

But in a letter to the CCG, Mr Betts says: “You say that residents will not be moved out of Woodland View but actually they have been already as a result of your reviews and the very hard line you are taking on them.

“Many people have been moved out, causing great distress to them and their families and we had lots of discussions about that.

“Quite frankly it seems to me that after the meeting we had in March absolutely nothing has changed. There are still a lot of issues outstanding which I have written to you about and not had a reply.”

Mr Betts says he’s had no explanation for “substantial cuts in funding” on Continuing Health Care and spare places at Woodland View being used for people with lower needs.

He adds: “You have never come back to me with an explanation. Quite frankly it has been impossible to make any progress following the conversation we had at the beginning of March.

“You simply have not replied to many of the points and it seems there has been a plan to reduce capacity at Woodland View, which has not come out in the open and transparent way I would have expected.”

Mr Betts says he will continue to fight for residents to ensure people with severe dementia have the best facilities and help.

The CCG says it is reviewing dementia services with its partners across the city to make sure they meet people’s needs and are fit for the future. It will publish draft plans on being a dementia-friendly city in the autumn.

In a joint statement, Mandy Philbin, Chief Nurse at the CCG, and Clive Clarke, Deputy Chief Executive and Executive Director of Operations at Sheffield Health and Social Care Trust said: “Following a review of capacity within dementia services in the city which showed we have more enhanced dementia beds than are required, a decision was taken to reduce the number of beds at Woodland View from 45 to 30.

“We want to reassure people that there are no plans to close Woodland View and no residents will be moved from a long-term bed at Woodland View as a result of the decision to reduce the number of beds.

“In order to reduce the number of beds, the CCG temporarily placed on hold any new admissions to Woodland View to allow Woodland View to safely reduce its bed numbers.

“Once the bed numbers had been reduced the number of cottages in use at Woodland View was reduced from three to two.”

The CCG says it wrote to families explaining why there will be a reduction in beds and reassuring them that no residents will be moved. Staff were consulted and there won’t be any job losses.