Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Birmingham And Solihull Mental Health Foundation NHS Trust

UserWatch Reports July 2008

Old oppressions renew themselves in new forms : 5 years after the various NHS mental health Trusts in Birmingham merged we have the new promise of a very corporate and finance driven NHS Trust which will be able to accrue surpluses to "benefit patients"... Well we will see , but Benjamin the Donkey from a certain farm related to Mr Orwell is nodding in his wiser negative fashion . Nayyyy Nayyyyyy ... HeeHawww ..

The persistent parrot of Patient Choice which is an almost dodo-ic bird patrolling the old leftover bushes where the Water Towers once were has slowly developed invisibility to match its previous invisibility thus doubling up helpfully for the lack of real insight by the NHS services ..

Ghosts cannot even see this purer invisibility

Will patients ever be free of the corporatised chains of Top Down mental health management in Birmingham ? We doubt it ... The 11000 figure of members at the new Foundation Trust we think was also partly stitched up .

We know a User Group that was phoned up by staff and asked to sign up for membership and it was made clear that it was "just a peice of paper, and that a neighbour had done it "

In other words just casually signed up ... A kind of bum on seats approach...

UserWatch saw the Foundation Trusts as inveitable but the rituals of democracy around them as mainly sadly bullshit really because once again it avoids the central issue of patients being served by ANY recovery services (post serious crisis) by having choices and real purchase power converted from the over staffed overmanaging bureaucracy that by cash diversion chains MH patients often into circles of crisis and even false cultures of "User groups". We have experienced many situations where Users locally and in the UK are left to themselves by services that are lean and boned and even gutted of much real human and empathic content .. Surpluses will be made by management authority at the new Foundation Trust - tweaked a bit by Governors who will be given red carpet treatments and patted with importance and will go along to "meetings" and more "meetings" ..

Agenda's will be set from the Top and Centre ... For some Users its a soul-killing ground . To get to this stage BSMHFT has made "savings"...... Over 3 million ....And its all covered up that some did not get the care they deserved - who are they ? They are the Users that do not always articulate themselves well and are fractured in soul and life and they wander in circles of social zero-ness because lean and leaned on staff have to create a new "lean service" ...

The new parlance instead of real market driven consumer power of Patient Choice is one of "Partnerships" and this is Corporo-speke for : "We are still in charge but look deeply concerned when you say you are a User or Carer and mention need....

Partnership with the NHS cannot be equal in any real sense at most individual levels without brokering market forces into the equation when people can usefully use them to get out of mental health culture circles .. Mental health services are still a colony in subtle but deeply ingrained chains ..


"The newly named Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust (BSMHFT) will start operating as a Foundation Trust today, 1st July 2008, after receiving confirmation from Monitor, the independent regulator for NHS foundation trusts.

Sue Turner, Chief Executive said “I’m delighted that our Trust has been awarded Foundation Status. It is a true reflection
of the hard work, dedication and commitment from our staff that we are in a position to operate as a Foundation Trust”

This level of involvement and the freedoms that FT status gives us means we can further develop our services to truly reflect the needs of the communities we serve”, added Sue.

With over 11,000 members, the Trust has received fantastic support from staff, patients and local people.

Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust remains part of the National Health Service but is more accountable to service users, their carers and families, staff and the local community through the new membership and governor arrangements. "

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