22 Armitage Court, Sunninghill, Ascot, Berks SL5 9TA.
Our Ref: NHSC6.RTF 9 February 2005
The Freedom of Information Officer,
The Royal Berks & Battle Hospital Trust, London Rd, Reading RG1 5AN.
Dear Sir or Madam,
Under the Freedom of Information Act, please supply the following information:
1) The Date on which the Secretary of State's Directive of 27th February, 2004
requiring the implementation of the promises made to Parliament in March 2003 was first obeyed at the Royal Berks & Battle Hospitals.
The promises were as follows: In March, 2003 Lord Hunt (Health Minister) gave Parliament promises to issue directions to the NHS specifying that an assessment for continuing care is to be carried out, that a record is made of the assessment, and that the patient was informed of the right to ask for that decision to be reviewed and the outcome of the review. (as confirmed by letter to Andrew Mackay M.P. from the then Health Minister, Jacqui Smith). Lord Hunt also said "the patient will remain in hospital until the dispute about eligibility for continuing NHS care has been resolved". (House of Lords, 17th March, 2003)
2) The text of the written instructions given to NHS and Social Service staff at the Royal Berks & Battle Hospitals requiring them to obey the directive and the promises made to Parliament.
3) The text of the precise information about these promises supplied to patients and their families before the patient is transferred to a Care Home or to their own home with a care package.
4) In the period 1st March to 31st Dec, 2004 : the number of patients transferred from the the Royal Berks & Battle Hospitals to a care Home with their fees 100% paid for by the NHS. The number of patients transferred from the the Royal Berks & Battle Hospitals to a care home with their fees NOT 100% paid for by the NHS. The number of patients transferred from the Royal Berks & Battle Hospitals to their own homes with a care package with their care 100% paid for by the NHS. The number of patients transferred from the Royal Berks & Battle Hospitals to their own homes with a care package with their care 100% NOT paid for by the NHS. The number of patients in all categories above in whose case the refusal of NHS free care was challenged by Social Services using the procedures set out in the delayed Discharges Act, 2003 and the outcome of such disputes. The number of patients in all categories who through their families or otherwise challenged the refusal of free care by the NHS and the outcome of such challenges.
5) the text of additional instructions issued to NHS staff and Social Services after Dr Ladyman on 28th Nov, 2004 told Panorama tonight that he had now instructed Social Services that it is their responsibility to ensure that ALL patients before leaving hospital with the knowledge of their families are considered automatically for possible free care.
6) Please confirm that, booklet 25253 is issued to all patients in the above categories.
Robin Lovelock , editor of www.nhscare.info