A CANCER CHARITY is refusing to be drawn into a row over a ‘postcode lottery’ that sees some Moray-based patients receiving treatment in Aberdeen having to pay for accommodation while others do not.
It was revealed this week that Moray MSP Richard Lochhead had written to the chief executive of NHS Grampian seeking clarification over why those with an AB postcode in his constituency were having to pay £30 a night to stay in the CLAN Haven in Aberdeen while receiving treatment.
Those with Moray homes in an IV postcode have been allowed to stay overnight at the Haven for free with their fee being paid by the NHS – sparking protests that using a postcode as a guide to the difficulties faced by patients was an unfair and unequal method of deciding who had the greater need.
As concerns have grown this week one Moray organisation said that they had learned about the unequal treatment – and had decided not to provide funding to the Cancer charity because of it.
However, the decision on funding is not one of CLAN’s making, although their chief executive Dr Colette Backwell refused to be drawn of if they would seek to negotiate with NHS Grampian.
Dr Backwell said: “CLAN has a positive working relationship with the NHS in Grampian, Orkney and Shetland. The cost of many of our clients staying at CLAN Haven from many remote, rural and island communities is covered by the agreement with NHS Grampian.
“This support is key to enabling CLAN to operate this important facility”
Meanwhile NHS Grampian insists that it has been aiming to maintain a “fair and consistent” approach to pricing patient stays at CLAN Haven, but confirmed that the concerns raised by Mr Lochhead on behalf of Moray-based patients would be discussed at future meetings.