Speaking during Health Questions on Tuesday 7th of February, Simon Hoare, Member of Parliament for North Dorset, brought to the attention of the Sectary of State for Health, the role of local services, schools, colleges and community hospitals, when looking to tackle mental health issues arising in children and young people. This comes amidst scrutiny of the role of local services within the health care system in North Dorset, especially around the CCG’s proposals to close beds at Westminster Memorial Hospital.
Speaking in the House of Commons, Mr Hoare said: ‘I am grateful to my right Hon. Friend and the Prime Minister for their commitment to this important area of health and the parity that the Government are giving it. Does the Secretary of State agree that, as well as providing mental health support in both schools and colleges, community hospitals, due to their locality, status and scale, can often provide a useful forum for providing these vital services?’
In response, the Secretary of Health answered: ‘I am pleased that my hon. Friend raises that point, because when we discuss mental health we often talk about services provided by mental health trusts but do not give enough credit to the work done in primary care, both in community hospitals and by general practitioners, who have a very important role as a first point of contact. He is absolutely right to make that point.’
Adding, Mr Hoare said: ‘I was greatly encouraged to hear Jeremy Hunt recognises the important role community hospitals, such as the Westminster Memorial, can play in delivering quality local health results; benefiting local people most in need. I hope this gives the CCG food for thought.’