Nascot Lawn: Parents demonstrate outside NHS before final decision

PUBLISHED: 14:24 16 November 2017 | UPDATED: 14:28 16 November 2017

Parents belonging to the Save Nascot Lawn group protesting at Herts Valleys Clinical Commissioning Group offices.

Parents belonging to the Save Nascot Lawn group protesting at Herts Valleys Clinical Commissioning Group offices.

Archant

Parents and politicians have mounted a last-ditch defence of Nascot Lawn respite centre.

Parents belonging to the Save Nascot Lawn group protesting at Herts Valleys Clinical Commissioning Group offices.Parents belonging to the Save Nascot Lawn group protesting at Herts Valleys Clinical Commissioning Group offices.

Around 20 people joined the Save Nascot Lawn group’s demonstration at Herts Valleys Clinical Commissioning Group’s offices this afternoon.

At the same time, the CCG’s finance committee were meeting to decide whether to keep funding Nascot Lawn respite facility.

The facility provides short-breaks for children with complex health needs and learning disabilities.

Julie Josephs, whose son Dominic attends Nascot Lawn, was at the demonstration and said: “Today we are hoping the CCG will make the right decision and keep funding Nascot Lawn as a nurse-led respite centre.

Parents belonging to the Save Nascot Lawn group protesting at Herts Valleys Clinical Commissioning Group offices.Parents belonging to the Save Nascot Lawn group protesting at Herts Valleys Clinical Commissioning Group offices.

“Or at least allow us a couple of years to transition the kids to other centres.

“Two of the Nascot Lawn children have died since this started. One was receiving continuing care [24-hour-a-day nurse care], one was not.

“My belief is that all the children in Nascot Lawn will qualify for continuing care, that is why we need a nurse-led respite centre.

“But this shows how complex these children’s medical conditions are. That needs to be brought to people’s attention.”

The parents began singing songs and wielding placards at the Hemel Hempstead offices where HVCCG have their offices.

Several local politicians joined them, including county councillor Mark Watkin and borough councillor Nigel Bell.

Cllr Bell said: “If, sadly, the CCG go ahead with their decision to cut the support, it’s up to the ten Conservative MPs in the county to take action to demand urgent action from senior managers of the NHS to provide enough money to keep Nascot Lawn going.

“If not, they should go to Jeremy Hunt and the Cabinet.”

The parents are protesting both the idea of closing Nascot Lawn, and the supposed lack of consultation by HVCCG.

At a press conference last week, the parents said the fight could go to the High Court if they weren’t consulted properly.

Cllr Watkin said: “It’s disgraceful how this has been carried out.”

“A complete lack of consultation and no consideration for what it’s going to do to families and the children.

“Worst of it is there was no attempt to liase with Herts County Council to come up with a long-term solution for the future.”

Herts Valleys CCG’s decision is expected to be announced soon.

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