Hospice beds cuts issue raised in Parliament

Claire Baker, Labour MSP for Mid Scotland and Fife, has raised the issue of proposed cuts to hospice care in Fife in the Scottish Parliament yesterday.

Claire Baker asked Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon to raise the issue of hospice bed cuts at NHS Fife’s Annual Review on November 28 and urged the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Wellbeing to seek clarity over the future of the hospice care in Fife.

Claire Baker said: “It’s crucial that people undergoing end-of-life care receive the right support in the right surroundings, which is why I have asked the Cabinet Secretary to listen to the more than 12,000 people who have signed a petition opposing a reduction to hospice beds.

“I appreciate the difficult economic choices NHS Fife faces to find savings, however, for the many thousands of people who have been affected by cancer, the importance of hospice care can’t be underestimated.

“The Cabinet Secretary will take part in NHS Fife’s Annual Review later this month, and when she does I urge her to raise the issue with the board of how strongly the public stands behind hospice care and clarify with NHS Fife what decision it intends to make regarding a reduction of hospice beds in Fife.”

Minister for Public Health Michael Matheson said: “The cabinet secretary expects to meet the chair of NHS Fife on 21 November during her routine meeting with national health service board chairs. She will also be chairing the NHS Fife annual review.”

More than 12,000 people have signed a petition to oppose the cut.