RESIDENTS are being asked for their views on out-of-hospital health services as part of a root and branch review across Morecambe Bay.

A second wave of consultations, focusing on services offered by GPs, pharmacists and community health staff, is to be held across south Cumbria and north Lancashire to gather further recommendations for the the Bay-wide Better Care Together programme.

“We want to update local people on how the feedback we have received so far has helped to develop our thinking around the delivery of future health and care services, and to work with them to co-create a new super health system to serve Morecambe Bay,” explained Dr Hugh Reeve, clinical chair of the Cumbria Clinical Commissioning Group.

“Our vision is for hospitals, social care, community care and primary care services to work together to wrap care around the patient, and to treat people in their own homes or communities when possible, unless they need the kind of specialist care that can only be provided in a hospital setting.”

The Better Care Together review was set up to improve services across the Morecambe Bay area.

Initially it focused on services within hospitals but extensive discussions with the public, together with advice from leading doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals and feedback from NHS staff, led to it being widened to put greater emphasis on care outside hospital.

“Everyone will have their own preferences for healthcare, for both themselves and their loved ones, but we also know that people are realistic about some of the difficult issues that are facing the NHS, and want to be involved in developing the solutions,” said Dr Alex Gaw, chair of Lancashire North Clinical Commissioning Group.

“There are some complex issues at stake, which is why we want as many people as possible to come forward and contribute their views before we start to describe the possible scenarios for future care.”

It is envisaged that a series of recommendations from the review will be presented to NHS England for approval in the summer.

Any proposals for major changes to services would then require consultation.

More information about the review can be found at


The details of upcoming public events are as follows:

* Sat March 15, Lancaster Town Hall, 10am until 12.30pm and 2.30pm until 5pm.

* Mon March 17, Kendal Town Hall, 2pm until 4pm and 6.30pm until 8pm

* Tues March 18, Barrow Forum 28, 2pm until 4pm and 6.30pm until 8pm

* Wed March 19, The Platform, Morecambe, 2pm until 4pm and 6.30pm until 8pm

* Fri March 21, Millom Network Centre, 2pm until 4pm and 6.30pm until 8pm

* Sat March 22, Ulverston Coronation Hall, 10am until 12.30pm and 2.30pm until 5pm.