MY HUSBAND recently had to undergo emergency surgery at the Royal to remove his gallbladder as it had ruptured and he had developed sepsis.
He had been waiting nine months for a referral just to see a consultant.
Three weeks ago I wrote to my MP Rachel Maclean asking for the timetable for the new surgical center in Worcestershire, one of 50 new centers announced by the government in August 2022 to deal with the surgical backlog .
I understood that there was a plan to build seven new operating rooms at Alexandra Hospital.
Looking at Redditch Council’s planning webpage, it is documented that the application was refused on September 30, 2022, due to insufficient information to determine the impacts of the proposals on transport and highways.
So this process could take forever if it even gets passed and then there’s the construction and fit-out itself so we can look at many years, if that ever happens.
How many patients will die waiting for elective procedures that then become critical?
I also asked Ms Maclean about the outpatient drug shortages I encountered at Alexandra Hospital, where prescriptions were only partly filled due to low stocks, and pharmacists in Redditch were advising people to go to the hospital pharmacy because they were out of Stock.
I also understand that the drug sales tax has been increased on generic drugs from 14.3% in 2022 to 24.4% in 2023 and that this will in turn be passed on by the pharmaceutical sector to the NHS.
This will significantly increase the bill paid by the NHS for drugs.
Finally, I mentioned the £550m pledged on September 22 by the government to speed up the exit from adult social care and free up hospital beds.
The NHS Confederation said it had not received a penny of that sum to date.
This email I sent was polite and courteous and I quickly received an acknowledgment.
However, three weeks later, I have not received a response, despite sending a reminder.
Obviously, voter correspondence can be filed in the trash can as unimportant, compared to weekly photo ops and writing a PR column in the local paper.
Anything remotely critical of this government can be ignored.
The library survey
Regarding Redditch Library, the County Council’s inquiry asks:
“It is proposed that the Redditch Library be relocated to enable the Redditch Town Plan to be completed.
How much do you agree or disagree with the new location of the library being Redditch Town Hall? ‘
The reference is only to the most recent urban plan.
In the past decade, no downtown improvement consultant report has suggested relocating the library.
Since its opening in 1976, the library’s usage area has been reduced.
National government dosh could be spent on increasing the size of the building rather than demolishing it.
Land is available to the rear of Market Walk and to the side of Alcester Walk.
This would not encroach on the lands of the Kingfisher Mall and would increase footfall in the area.
A rather offhand remark heard is that any extension to the current library building should include skylight type windows.
Councilor Dormer objected to the brick wall at the back of it
I ATTENDED my first RBC meeting as an observer in the public space.
There are many comments that I could make following my participation because it was truly an enlightening experience.
I expected to see democracy in action with healthy and stimulating debate where all members demonstrated honesty, openness, transparency, accountability and good manners.
Instead, I have seen behavior among the governing Conservative group that is reminiscent of our national government in the House of Commons.
I have witnessed smirks, eye rolls and bad manners in response to valid and important points raised by labor advisers.
Worse still, a conservative group showed complacency and entitlement, only possible because of their majority.
Their arguments almost all lacked solid evidence and clear logical arguments.
All this against the background of moving the library 100m further at a cost already exceeded by inflation.
The city’s regeneration plans are sorely lacking in innovation and creativity.
No one will be drawn to Redditch as it has great cafes and a shiny new train station.
The current state of our national politics and the severe crisis in the cost of living seem to have almost overtaken them, which will hopefully lead to their downfall in the next election.
Our population in Redditch is proportionally very young.
Hope Gen Z kicks this batch to the curb.
Bank of Astwood