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Council 'appalled' at cuts to Severn Hospice funding

By Mat Growcott | Telford | Health | Published:

Councillors in Wellington have expressed their “extreme disappointment” over cuts to funding at the Severn Hospice.

Severn Hospice in Telford

Wellington Town Council has written to David Evans and Dr Jo Leahy, both of Telford & Wrekin Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), in opposition to the cuts from the organisation, which would leave a £250,000 hole in the hospice’s budget.

Severn Hospice would close two beds from its in-patient centre in Telford following the decision by the CCG to cut funding by 25 per cent.

The letter, written by Wellington Town Council’s clerk Karen Roper, says: “The town council thank you for the explanations you have given but were appalled at the outcome.

“I have therefore been instructed to express the extreme disappointment felt by all Wellington Town Councillors in relation to any reduction in funding for Severn Hospice.

“We appreciate that the decision has been difficult for you and has been necessitated by your statutory obligation to deliver a balanced budget and we are pleased that you are maintaining liaison with the hospice to explore mutually beneficial schemes.

“The town council felt the issue should be about how best to help people when they need it most and not about money.”

Stark

More than 7,000 people have now signed a petition calling for the drop in funding to be blocked.

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The petition, set up by the Telford & Wrekin Labour group, calls on the Government to reverse the cuts.

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The petition, which has been running for about two months, reached 7,000 supporters on Monday, and has added another 65 signatures in the time since.

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Bosses at Severn Hospice said the CCG would be hit by the cost of reducing funding in the long run.

Heather Palin, Severn Hospice chief executive, said: “In stark terms someone who is dying might now face their death somewhere in a hospital rather than in a hospice.

"It will cost the Clinical Commissioning Group considerably more than its grant to us to care for that same patient in Princess Royal Hospital.”

Mat Growcott

By Mat Growcott
Reporter - @MGrowcott_Star

Shropshire Star reporter

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