Conservatives’ NHS record on “Black Alert”

Posted on: 11th January 2020

The on-going crisis at our Treliske’s Emergency Department – A&E – exposes the results of four years of Conservative underfunding and mismanagement of our NHS. Again it’s twice been on Black Alert (or Opal level 4) this week alone. I don’t need to explain to people who live at the far end of a long peninsula 85 miles from the next nearest A&E at Plymouth just how vulnerable this leaves us!

Meanwhile our Urgent Treatment Centre at Penzance has been downgraded at night.

Many of us, including West Cornwall Healthwatch, warned about this decades ago. We pointed out that we should maintain sufficient spare capacity at our main hospital and not consistently run the service at well above 95% capacity and bed occupancy as this leaves it vulnerable to the inevitable ebb and flow of emergency demand. Quite apart from leaving patients in danger through running the service under perpetual stress.

This crisis was predicted given years of under funding by the Conservatives. But they promised the earth for our NHS at the last election. So now they must deliver and quickly. That’s the very least we should expect in the present circumstances.