The current General Hospital in St Helier.
The current General Hospital in St Helier.

Healthcare in Jersey is provided by a range of publicly and privately owned providers. Health matters are overseen by the Department of Health and Community Services in the Government of Jersey.[1] The current Health Minister is Deputy Richard Renouf.[2]

Care at the Hospital is provided free at the point of use to most ordinary residents of Jersey and emergency care is provided to anyone. However, other services such as GP consultations are privately owned and a fee applies to use them.[3]

There is a Reciprocal Health Agreement with the United Kingdom, agreed in 2011.[4] It does not cover pre-existing or non-urgent conditions.[5]

History

During the Occupation, the Nazis constructed a number of Underground tunnels to house a Hospital.
During the Occupation, the Nazis constructed a number of Underground tunnels to house a Hospital.

Between 1945 and the Queen's coronation in 1952, there were outbreaks of polio and tuberculosis and the opening of the Jersey Maternity hospital and St John Ambulance headquarters. Agriculture was hit by a series of foot-and-mouth outbreaks.[6]

Healthcare system

Jersey operates a system of health cards. Anyone resident in the island for more than six months is eligible for a health card. Card holders are eligible for subsidised GP appointments and free prescriptions.[7]

Emergency care is available in the Emergency Department of the General Hospital for free for anyone who needs it.[3]

Non-emergency care at the Hospital is only available free to eligible persons. Pregnant women who are eligible can also get free maternity care and any baby born in Jersey, regardless of whether the parents are eligible, can get free postnatal care too. The following types of people - and their spouse, civil partner and dependent children - are eligible:[3]

Long-term care is provided for a charge under the Long-Term Care (Health and Community Services Charges) (Jersey) Law 2012, unless they are receiving care for specified mental health reasons. Adults can apply for financial assistance from the Customer and Local Services Department under the Long-Term Care Scheme. Minors who are ordinarily resident can get this care free of charge.[3]

General Practioners and Denists are private organisations, so they charge fees for consultations.[3]

Bandages and dressings are not provided. Patients have to provide their own. Family Nursing and Home Care, a local charity which administers free at-home care, cannot cover the cost of dressings.[8]

Proposed reform

The Jersey Care Model (JCM) is the conceptual framework for organising the health system in Jersey. The model is based around a 'three-ring' model: Person-centred Care, Primary and Community Services and Specialist Services.[9]

Currently, the Government argues, too much treatment is focused on the hospital. For example, the Emergency Department receives patient visits that are not emergency visits. However, under its reform programme, there will be better self-care and preventative care. The following changes are proposed –[10]

New hospital debate

There is a large debate about the construction of a new hospital in Jersey. A States Assembly Proposition (P.82/2012)[11] set out the need for a new hospital in 2012. This has been re-affirmed by the Jersey Care Model published in 2019.

On 13 February 2019, the States Assembly adopted a proposition (P.5/2019) that rescinded the approval of Gloucester Street (the current hospital site) as the site for the Future Hospital. The proposition also rejected the idea that the new hospital should be built at People's Park, Lower Park, Victoria Park, Westmount Gardens or the Parade Gardens.[12] The States voted 39 pour and 7 contre the decision.[13] The pour voters included Health Minister Deputy Richard Renouf who had previously supported the site, claiming the Gloucester St location had been "straight-jacketed" by the Island Plan. The Chief Minister said it would be "madness" to vote for the Gloucester St site again. The proposition does not rule out the Gloucester Street site, but calls for the restart of the selection process.[14] As a result, a 'significant portion' of the £41 million spent on the project today had to be written off, including the purchasing of a number of buildings on Kensington Place.[15]

In July 2020, the Our Hospital Team published the site shortlist for the new hospital, including five sites: St Andrew's Park; People's Park; Overdale; Five Oaks; and Millbrook Playing Fields.[16] 82 sites had originally been considered by the report team. Notably, St Saviour's Hospital and Warwick Farm were rejected due to being at an "unsustainable" location.[17]

On 17 November 2020, it was approved by the States Assembly that the new hospital would be constructed at Overdale in St Helier. It is expected to cost at least £550 million, but could cost up to £800 million.[18]

On 31 January 2021, Advocate Olaf Blakeley lodged a requête, an ancient legal device under Jersey law, on behalf of several home owners opposed to the site selection of the hospital. The legal device lanches a vote at a St Helier parish assembly which means the purchase of parish land could be blocked until more information is provided.[19]

On 1 February 2021, the States Assembly approved Westmount Road as the new access route for the hospital. The States voted 34 pour and 11 contre the decision. A number of protestors tied ribbons to trees that the protestors claimed would be destroyed by the project. The Government denied that any of them will be affected.[20] Senator Lyndon Farnham, who is the minister responsible for the project, clarified the cost of the proposed road would be £15.1 million.[21]

On 3 February 2022, the Our Hospital plans to demolish the existing buildings at Overdale were rejected, though this is not expected to have an impact on the delivery of the new hospital.[22] Furthermore, on 2 March 2022, the Planning Department objected to the proposed development because of the quality of design, the height of the building and the impact on the green backdrop zone.[23] On 16 March 2022, the Government accepted that if the hospital planning application is not approved, then a dual-site option could be used instead.[24]

See also

References

  1. ^ "Health and Community Services". Government of Jersey.((cite web)): CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  2. ^ "Members". statesassembly.gov.je. Retrieved 2021-02-25.
  3. ^ a b c d e Assistant Director, Policy & Ministerial Support (2021) Residents and Non-Residents Charging Policy, Government of Jersey Health and Community Services. August 2014, as revised March 2021. Retrieved 28 March 2022.
  4. ^ "Jersey and UK health agreement restored". BBC. 1 April 2011. Retrieved 19 November 2018.
  5. ^ "UK and Jersey health agreement". Government of Jersey. Retrieved 19 November 2018.
  6. ^ "From Liberation to Coronation" (PDF). Jersey Heritage. Retrieved 2020-12-30.((cite web)): CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  7. ^ "Moving to Jersey: Healthcare". Government of Jersey.((cite web)): CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  8. ^ "Jersey patients paying thousands of pounds for bandages". BBC. 14 March 2022. Retrieved 15 March 2022.
  9. ^ Renouf, Richard (22 September 2020). Jersey Care Model (PDF) (Report). States Greffe.
  10. ^ Jersey Care Model for Health and Community Services. Government of Jersey (gov.je). Retrieved 28 March 2022.
  11. ^ Council of Ministers (2012-09-11). "Health and Social Services: A New Way Forward" (PDF). States Greffe.
  12. ^ Labey, Russell (2019-01-15). Future Hospital: rescindment of Gloucester Street as preferred site [P.5/2019 - Proposition as adopted] (PDF) (Report). States Greffe.
  13. ^ States Assembly [@StatesAssembly] (February 13, 2019). "The Assembly voted 39-7 to reverse the decision to site the future hospital on the current site - here's how they voted statesassembly.gov.je/Pages/Votes.aspx?VotingId=5358 #statesassembly" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  14. ^ Express, Bailiwick. "Rejected: current site finally kicked out for new hospital". Bailiwick Express. Retrieved 2021-02-25.
  15. ^ Morris, Michael. "'Significant portion' of £41m spent on future hospital will be written off if Gloucester Street site is rejected". jerseyeveningpost.com. Retrieved 2021-02-25.
  16. ^ Heath, Richard. "Five sites shortlisted for Jersey's new hospital". jerseyeveningpost.com. Retrieved 2021-02-25.
  17. ^ Our Hospital Site Shortlist Report July 2020 (PDF) (Report). Government of Jersey. July 2020.
  18. ^ "Overdale approved as new Jersey hospital site". BBC News. 2020-11-17. Retrieved 2021-02-25.
  19. ^ Jeune, James. "Ancient legal device used in battle over hospital access". jerseyeveningpost.com. Retrieved 2021-03-09.
  20. ^ "Access to Jersey's new hospital approved by politicians". ITV News. 2021-02-01. Retrieved 2021-03-09.
  21. ^ Jeune, James. "Ancient legal device used in battle over hospital access". jerseyeveningpost.com. Retrieved 2021-03-09.
  22. ^ "Plans to demolish Jersey's Overdale hospital rejected". BBC News. 2022-02-03. Retrieved 2022-03-28.
  23. ^ "Hospital plans fail to gain support of Planning Department". Jersey Evening Post. 2022-03-02. Retrieved 2022-03-28.
  24. ^ Express, Bailiwick. "Back-up options grow if Overdale hospital plan is rejected". Bailiwick Express. Retrieved 2022-03-28.