HEALTH professionals were quizzed by over 100 residents about the pros and cons of their local healthcare.
As part of Suella Braverman’s Health Summit, representatives from the Fareham and Gosport CCG, Fareham Community Hospital, Hampshire County Council, Southern Health and Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust faced questions from the community regarding new schemes, service improvements and the future of healthcare in Fareham.
Colin Mansbridge from Locks Heath said: ‘This was a good idea and it is a step. Suella is trying to help and this has started the conversation.’
Panellists including Chair of Fareham and Gosport CCG, Dr David Chilvers and GP Dr Tom Bertram were questioned on local healthcare and schemes including the same day access service and new home visiting initiative.
Dr David Chilvers said: ‘We have a vastly increased population with greater needs and greater expectations.
‘We are living longer and so we have an older population with more complex issues.
‘We looked at whether we can carry on what we had been doing and when we did the sums we realised absolutely not.’
Penny Emrit from Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust spoke about the recent CQC report on Queen Alexandra Hospital when asked about how the hospital was improving.
She said: ‘We absolutely agree there is more to do and the areas they identified we have been looking to make sure we are improving.’
Dr Nick Broughton from Southern Health talked of the trust’s ‘chequered’ past and vowed ‘major improvements’ would be seen over the next 12 to 24 months.
Fareham Borough Councillor Katrina Trott said: ‘This summit was a good idea and gave residents a chance to air their concerns and the questions were answered well particular by the CCG.
‘Although I don’t agree with her politically as a Lib Dem myself, Suella is trying to do something.’
Suella Braverman said: ‘Healthcare in Fareham is a real priority for me and I felt it was important residents get to have their say whether it be about their GP surgery or Queen Alexandra Hospital and get answers from the people responsible.
The Fareham MP is amongst others who are campaigning to have more services at Fareham Community Hospital in order to relieve pressure on Queen Alexandra Hospital in Cosham.
Mrs Braverman added:‘I think Fareham Community Hospital has a critical part to play in local healthcare and the services it could have can avoid people having to go to A&E.’
But others feel Fareham Community Hospital, which cost £10m when it was built in 2010, won’t provide the solution for coping with further strain due to thousands more houses being built across the borough.
Resident Chris Nixon said: ‘The hospital was built in the wrong place for a lot of money and now it is not even doing what is it supposed to be doing.’