Update on sexual health services

We reported previously on our meeting with Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust (CNWL) about the Margaret Pyke Centre. A consultation has been launched.

You can read the document and respond to it on the CNWL website:

Healthwatch Camden got in touch with CNWL to comment on the consultation document. We said:

‘You have been frank that your aim is not to look at a range of options, but to test the assumption behind your preferred option. This drives a lot of rather closed questions. The detail on what “new approaches” and “new service models” might be on offer is missing, so people cannot easily judge whether what they are being offered is an adequate substitute for what they have now, or not.

‘Our experience is that when people think the answer to a consultation is pre-determined, they do not bother responding to it. That does not mean they don’t care, simply that they feel powerless to affect the outcome. It may make it difficult to engage a wide group of women.’

In their response to us, the Trust reiterated the need to save a large amount of money and said:

‘This significant funding gap from the Local Authorities limits the scope of what we can offer as options. To put this in context, the Camden Local Authority income for Contraception/SRH is less than 2% of our total income for Sexual Health Services.

‘Our primary focus in on the requirement to continue to meet the contraceptive needs of Camden women, we believe this is best done by securing the future of the Sexual Health service as a whole, which is what we believe we achieve with our recommended option’.

Healthwatch Camden will continue to press for the views and experience of women to be given full weight in the consultation.

Have your say, by commenting below.