“A worry for many patients admitted to hospital is picking up another infection whilst they are there. Receiving their treatment in the community would eliminate the risk of further hospital-acquired infections” Dr Gary Howsam, Whittlesey GP

“Patients are sent to hospital too often.  We certainly found it much better to carry out blood tests at the surgery rather than sending patients to a Minor Injuries Unit or hospital. It would be beneficial for each practice to have its own machine” Dr Simon Hambling, Doddington GP

“I have been a Fenland GP for over twenty years and have played my part over that period in introducing innovative services to Fenland. Historically, however, our area is under-resourced, and funding is desperately needed locally. I believe passionately that this inequality needs to be addressed. I have recently taken up post as Chair of the Wisbech Local Commissioning Group and would like to work with Stephen Barclay to fight our corner and try to improve local health services.” Dr Andrew Wordsworth, Wisbech GP

“It is notable how intervention at an early stage for young people suffering from mental health issues can make a huge difference to their own lives in the future. The appointment of new mental health workers in the community would allow these young people faster access to the care that they need” Dr Anthony Bond, Whittlesey GP

“We have as high a rate of obesity among our patients as they do at any of the March practices. It is a real problem, which is why I cannot understand why Chatteris has not been provided with health trainers.” Dr John Szekely, Chatteris GP

“I think the concept of making chemotherapy available locally is absolutely brilliant. It gives patients the opportunity to come and have their treatment on the doorstep. In many ways it is more personal. It’s almost a one-to-one relationship between the patients and the nurses” Gary Shepherd, Practice Manager at Littleport’s St George’s Medical Centre

“I am a community pharmacist in Wisbech and come across many customers/patients who struggle to go to King’s Lynn, Peterborough or Cambridge for treatment/tests etc. Having services in Wisbech would help them enormously. It is always the most vulnerable people who suffer when services are moved away from their home town.” Hina, Wisbech

“I work as a district nurse and feel that resources need to be moved from the acute sector to the community to allow us to treat patients in their own homes.” Shirley, District Nurse and Wisbech St Mary resident

“I think a change so that dementia carers in particular can get help directly would be beneficial. It would free up some of our time, it would mean less bureaucracy for the carers and it would mean that patients could access help faster” Dr Matthew Stephens, Littleport GP

“The community will benefit from GPs having near patient blood testing. I think the surgeries really do need these facilities” Parvan Patel, Wisbech Community Pharmacist

“Working within cancer services I see daily the practical, physical and financial distress caused to people attending hospital regularly. This is made worse by lengthy car journeys and full day waits due to transport constraints. Offering local services is something expected in many urban locations, however in such rural locations we travel miles to obtain basic healthcare. Being able to receive local healthcare would improve so many people’s lives during difficult times” Helen, Wisbech

“As a retired health professional I know that people have better health outcomes if they are near their family and friends. Travelling a distance when relatives are sick is an added burden and stress for people, particularly the elderly, who may not be as mobile.” Sally, Leverington resident

“The first-hand experience of seeing a family member having to travel to Addenbrookes for cancer treatment on a daily basis, using community transport and being away from home for up to twelve hours at a time was distressing for them and for us. To be able to have these treatments, blood results and counselling locally would take such a lot of stress away from the patients at a very traumatic time in their and their family’s lives. A brilliant idea which certainly deserves the support of all of the community” Susan, March resident

“I think it would be useful if every surgery had someone who specialises in dementia. We have someone who deals with asthma and another person who looks after diabetes, so it would make sense to have someone similar for dementia.” Val, Whittlesey resident

“My husband has a twenty minute walk and two buses to catch to go to Kings Lynn to get chemo treatment. It would be so much better if he could get it at North Cambs Hospital” Vanessa, Wisbech resident

“We live in such a rural area and travelling to these city hospitals worries a lot of people, especially senior citizens” Christine, Wimblington resident

“I asked if I could go home and have the IV treatment but as there was nowhere for me to have the treatment I had to stay in hospital. It seems ridiculous that I was taking up a hospital bed when I didn’t need to. I would have been happy to travel to Doddington Hospital three or four times a day to have the treatment I needed as it is only up the road. It would have meant the hospital had a bed they could use for someone who really needed it, and I would have been happier recovering at home.” March resident Trevor, who spent eight days in hospital due to an insect bite

“Living in a small town in the middle of the Fens usually means a twenty mile journey to a major hospital. We need local health services” Lisa, March resident

“Treating people closer to home makes sense on several levels. It would mean less travel time and less road congestion – therefore it must be “greener”…one consultant travelling to, say, Wisbech to see a dozen patients must be more sensible than twelve patients all travelling to Addenbrookes in separate cars and paying twelve car park fees to see a consultant. It would mean less stress for the patients too. Good luck with this campaign.” Stephen, Wisbech resident

“I’ve sat in A&E for hours with all of my three children at some point, and also with my parents and even friends who have needed emergency care, and it is stressful. If the Minor Injuries Unit at Doddington was to stay open until 8pm it would be really useful. As a parent you know the most likely time you are going to need to seek medical help is in the evening, when you get home from work and the doctors’ surgery is closed.” Ruth, March mum-of-three

“My husband has stage four cancer, as well as arthritis, which means he needs two knee replacements. Being able to see consultants for both of these conditions locally instead of travelling to King’s Lynn makes perfect economic sense.” Mary, Wisbech resident

“I would like to see a return to small local hospitals treating minor injuries, which would ultimately take the pressure off our large A and E hospital departments.” Vivien, Murrow resident

“With Huntingdon and Peterborough hospitals already so busy, why not alleviate the pressure by transferring some of the workload to other smaller hospitals? This would mean less traffic on the roads and patients being treated in their own communities. What is there not to like about these proposals?” June, March resident

“Localised health care is vital to support the continuing and increasing needs of our community. In the long term it will save NHS money and promote economic growth.” Hazel, Wimblington resident

“Patients living in rural areas should not be penalised by long journeys to hospitals and subjected to excessive parking charges on top of the petrol for a 70 mile round trip. This seriously needs addressing.” Robert, March resident

“As a teacher and mother it’s very difficult to cope with hospital appointments as it means taking an entire day off. Having appointments locally would mean I could just take an hour off work.” Fiona, Whittlesey resident

“As a carer for my parents who both have dementia, I think it is very important that elderly people are able to attend appointments at our local hospital in Doddington. We have found that when they have been taken to a larger hospital it adds to their confusion and disorientation as the premises appear daunting and waiting times are so much longer.” Susan, March resident

“I have a chronic long term illness which necessitates frequent GP & hospital appointments. A round trip to hospital is 40 miles, where it is difficult and expensive to park and takes virtually all day. Services locally would be cheaper and more convenient.” Carol, Sutton resident

“As retired people, we are desperate to keep and possibly expand health services for local use. Kings Lynn & Peterborough are a long haul when we have North Cambs Hospital here in our town…Why overload other places when our local facility could be made fully functional?” Sandra, Wisbech resident

“I support Doddington Hospital’s Minor Injuries Unit opening from 8-8 because people don’t want to travel all the way to Huntingdon or King’s Lynn when they get injured” Shardul, Doddington resident

“Peterborough Hospital outpatient clinics appear to be bursting at the seams and what with the risk of picking up secondary infections, waiting times, additional stress locating a parking space and costs it would be a great improvement to localise health care for all age groups.” Denise, Whittlesey resident

“In the long-term local treatment will be far more cost-effective for our most valuable NHS as well as to individuals on tight budgets, and much better for the physical and mental health of everybody concerned.” Julia, Wisbech St Mary resident

“My husband is very ill and attends a total of five different hospitals. We are unable to drive and he is not well enough to use public transport. It would be easier if most if not all of his treatment was done locally not to mention the cost saved in hospital transport” Nita, March resident

“I have to take a day off work every time my disabled wife has an appointment at Kings Lynn or Ely. It’s madness that we have to travel so far for appointments which could be held in Wisbech. Seven months into the year and I have used up my entire holiday allowance. Now each day off is unpaid.” Mark, Tydd St Giles resident