Spire wins claim over NHS choice

Fylde coast Spire Hospital
Fylde coast Spire Hospital
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Health chiefs on the Fylde coast will ensure patients are given more choice over where they are treated after the watchdog stepped in.

Monitor, which regulates health services in the UK, has accepted plans from Blackpool Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and Fylde and Wyre CCG to improve choice offered to patients.

It follows a complaint from Spire Healthcare, which runs Spire Fylde Coast Hospital, on St Walburga’s Road, that patients were not being offered a choice of hospitals for routine surgery, or being given enough information about the different hospitals available.

Monitor upheld that part of the complaint, but dismissed claims commissioners were directing patients away from its Spire Fylde Coast Hospital towards a nearby foundation trust.

The watchdog said commissioners also committed to helping GPs give patients more information about the different services available.

Catherine Davies, executive director of co-operation and competition at Monitor, said: “Patients tell us they value being able to choose when and where they get treatment. We welcome these plans from local commissioners.”

The CCGs will report to Monitor to update it on their compliance.