With the entire country facing an unprecedented challenge in its war against Coronavirus all efforts of local health and care partners are focussed on supporting the frontline.
This means, for a time, other programmes aimed at the long-term transformation of services are being placed on hold.
The difficult decisions engagement around prioritising and aligning clinical policies in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent, is therefore paused.
Dr Lorna Clarson, GP in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent and clinical lead for this work, said: “We have been analysing the really important feedback on how we prioritise services for the future. The next stage of the engagement process was deciding on the options to take forward for each service based on this feedback. However, this requires direct input from clinicians, and at the moment they really all need to be concentrating on fighting a pandemic. It’s a case of prioritising our clinical resource.
“We had hoped to start the formal consultation in the autumn but as a result this will be postponed. We cannot give an estimate of when this work will continue because no one knows how long it will take to defeat this virus.”
Dr Clarson, added: “We’d really like to thank everyone who has participated in our survey and engagement events at the beginning of the year. Our promise to you is none of your input will go to waste and the feedback we’ve gathered so far will be used to shape the future engagement and consultation.
“In the meantime, we cannot be any clearer or stronger in our message to each and every one of you to follow the Government and NHS advice on staying safe, isolating and looking after the most vulnerable. Please take advice from official sources and not social media.”
The Difficult Decisions engagement launched in January 2020 and ended 1 March 2020. More information about the Difficult Decisions work can be found on each of the CCG websites: