• Portsmouth Hospitals Chief Executive lies about Public Meeting

    Yesterday, Ursula Ward, the Chief Executive of Portsmouth Hospitals Trust wrote to me to say that the Hospital Trust had not refused to attend a public meeting about the closure of the G5 Ward:

    "In your email you state that I have previously refused to attend such an event. I think it is important that I put the record straight in that I have never refused such an invitation."
    Ursula Ward 17th February 2011

    This is an outright lie.

    Below I attached my email to Ursula Ward today which included a copy of an email from the PA to Julie Dawes, the Director of Nursing and ‘executive lead’ on end-of-life care, confirming that the Hospital’s Executive Management Team had considered the request further but refused to attend. It is worth noting that her letter to me yesterday was itself in reply to a repeated invitation asking the Hospital Trust to attend the public meeting and address the concerns of patients and their families.

    My email to Ursula Ward:

    Dear Mrs Ward,

    In response to your letter (by email) of 17th February 2011, I feel that it is I who should set the record straight for you. I attach below for your information a copy of the email exchange between myself and Claire Woodward (on behalf of Julie Dawes, Director of Nursing) confirming your Executive Team’s refusal to send a hospital representative to last night’s public meeting. I am sure that Allison Stratford, your director of Communications and Engagement, will be happy to confirm to you that the subject of a public meeting was discussed on the 17th January and your Executive Team undertook to reply to the request within 7 days.

    You are perfectly aware that the meeting of the 17th January was not a public meeting and it is misleading to try and represent it as such. In fact, the hospital explicitly restricted us to 5 attendees and demanded names and questions in advance of that meeting.

    I brought this to the attention of the members of the Independent Reconfiguration Panel in my meeting with them yesterday and also raised your point that it would not be appropriate for you to attend a public meeting while their review was underway. They stressed to me that this was entirely your decision as a hospital and that they would not have raised objections to you attending such a meeting. In fact, the members of the Panel themselves did attend last night’s public meeting and listened to the views of dozens of patients and families with experience of end-of-life care at Queen Alexandra Hospital.

    It is regrettable that once again the Hospital has shown a complete disregard for the opinion of patients and families, and that you continue to seek to avoid public scrutiny.


    Will Purvis

    Save G5 Ward Campaign Group


    From: Woodward Claire – PA to Director of Nursing [mailto:claire.woodward@porthosp.nhs.uk]

    Sent: 21 January 2011 09:55

    To: Will Purvis

    Subject: RE: FAO: Julie Dawes – Meeting with Save G5 Ward Campaign Group

    Dear Mr Purvis

    Thank you for your email and request for further information. I have attached the presentation that was given on 17th January 2011 and email address for Mark Roland (noted below).


    As agreed on the 17th, in response to the group’s request for a public meeting, I can confirm that Julie and the Executive Management Team have given this further consideration. However, their view remains that, whilst the IRP are considering the end of life care pathway, a public meeting would not be appropriate. They, and the Board, will await the IRPs findings.

    If you have any further queries please do not hesitate to contact myself or Julie.

    Kind regards.

    Claire Woodward

    Personal Assistant to Julie Dawes, Director of Nursing


    Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust

    Trust Headquarters

    Room F307,  F Level

    Queen Alexandra Hospital


    PO6 3LY

    Tel: 02392 28(6801)

    Fax: 02392 286073

    Email: Claire.Woodward@porthosp.nhs.uk

    From: Will Purvis [mailto:wapurvis@me.com]

    Sent: 18 January 2011 12:40

    To: ‘claire.woodward@porthosp.nhs.uk’

    Subject: FAO: Julie Dawes – Meeting with Save G5 Ward Campaign Group

    Dear Julie,

    I just wanted to thank you for holding last night’s meeting and ask that you pass mine and my colleagues’ thanks on to everyone from the hospital who gave up their evening to meet with us. As I have tried to make clear at every point I am extremely keen there is a real dialogue between the hospital and campaigners about any concerns and that it is based on a good understanding of the facts.

    The information you provided in your presentation was extremely useful and I was wondering if you would be kind enough to email me a copy of the slides. I think it is important to ensure that any future questions or concerns raised by the campaign group are based upon accurate information and not reliant on hastily taken notes last night.

    I hope that the Executive Team is able to consider carefully the proposal for a joint public meeting and look forward to hearing from you with a proposal for an independent Chair with whom you would be happy to work. I am of course willing to discuss any other details of the proposal to ensure that you feel you have the best possible opportunity to fairly put your case to the public.

    I only have one other request, would you be able to give the email contact details for Mark Roland as he kindly indicated last night that he may be able to get me a copy of Hampshire’s end-of-life care strategy?

    Many thanks,

    Will Purvis