Angry MP Barry Sheerman has blasted Huddersfield health officials for removing millions of pounds of income from hospitals.

The Labour MP has spoken out after Calderdale and Huddersfield Foundation Trust went into the red for the first time in more than a decade.

As reported, hospital watchdog Monitor has launched in investigation after the Trust failed to make enough savings to deliver its planned £3m surplus, instead predicting a £4m overspend for 2014/15.

The Trust has already lost millions after contracts for wheelchair services and termination of pregnancy services were outsourced to private firms and charities by Greater Huddersfield Clinical Commissioning Group (GHCCG).

Now documents to the Trust’s board reveal hospital bosses have identified a further £12m of services that are at risk of being offered to other health providers.

Mr Sheerman accused GHCCG chiefs of “having no sense of responsibility” for ensuring the future viability of the hospital.

His comments come after Monitor called for a “greater pace” of change for the hospital’s restructure plan, which was delayed by GHCCG last July.

“It’s all very well outsourcing and thinking you’re doing a wonderful job,” he said. “But it takes a substantial income away from the Trust.

“There’s something wrong with CCG procedures, it’s not working in the best interests of the hospital.

“I’m not happy – people in our town want the CCG and the health trust to work in partnership. At the moment it’s not working and people like me have got to tell them in very strong words.

“If we keep on outsourcing it will destroy the fundamental foundations of our Trust.”

Huddersfield Royal Infirmary in Lindley
Huddersfield Royal Infirmary in Lindley
 

Other hospital services put out to competitive tender by GHCCG and neighbouring North Kirklees CCG include anti-coagulation services in Huddersfield; school nursing services in Calderdale; and a range of Kirklees wide community services including, specialist nursing, podiatry, dietetics, community rehabilitation and dermatology.

The hospital trust has admitted fears that even if it bids for and wins any tenders for services it already runs, the value of the contracts are shrinking amid pressure on Kirklees and Calderdale CCGs’ budgets.

A document for hospital chiefs also reveals concern that the loss of community-based services “creates risk to the Trust’s reputation and credibility”.

Chief executive of GHCCG, Carol McKenna, declined to comment on Mr Sheerman’s accusations.

But responding to the delay in the hospital shake-up consultation and the Monitor probe into the hospital trust, she said: “While financial factors will be one element of any decisions we make in future, they are only one element, and our primary focus is that any changes made should be for the benefit of patients.

“People told us during the engagement work that more needed to be done on community services before making changes to hospital – that is what we are doing.”