What is CHEK’s aim and ambition?
CHEK’s sole purpose is to fight for the best possible provision of healthcare for the residents of east Kent. We want the services that have been lost from the Kent & Canterbury returned, and we want to see the creation of a new medical school to solve the recruitment crisis.
What is CHEK campaigning against?
CHEK believes the NHS Trust’s plan for east Kent is to effectively close the Kent & Canterbury, to downgrade the QEQM in Margate, and to centralise services in Ashford. While we acknowledge that healthcare in the future cannot be delivered in the same way as it has in the past, we do not accept that the William Harvey in Ashford is suitable to become east Kent’s primary hospital.
We believe that centralising specialist services in Canterbury while retaining hospitals in Ashford and Margate, using a hub-and-spoke model, is the most efficient and safest way to deliver healthcare.
- Canterbury is the centre of east Kent (so nobody would have to drive over an hour to get to hospital).
- It has the largest population.
- It is the easiest to get to by car, train or bus.
Why is CHEK not aligned with any political party?
CHEK does not support and is not controlled by any party. Many of our committee have allegiances to a political party and all the main parties are represented in the group, but CHEK has to represent all the residents of east Kent so remains independent.
By aligning ourselves to one party, we would cease to represent, and lose the support of, members of the other parties.
We believe we stand the best chance of achieving our objectives by working together and putting aside party allegiance for the greater good. We have worked in this way since our creation over 20 years ago and will continue to do so.
Does that mean CHEK is non-political?
CHEK is very much a political organisation because we’re involved in local politics. However, we have a very specific purpose which is to prevent the loss of services from the Kent and Canterbury and to support the creation of a medical school.
We recognise that the NHS faces many challenges, including (but not limited to) rising costs, reductions in government spending, the STPs and wider NHS structure, and government policy of the day.
While many of our members actively campaign on these issues, it is not the purpose of CHEK to attempt to alter national government policy. We do not have the scope or the resources to campaign on a national level, and doing so would dilute our primary objective.
Since CHEK was created we have had four different Prime Ministers and eight different Health Secretaries. CHEK has remained relevant by never losing sight of our core ambition and remaining politically neutral.
I don’t agree with the direction CHEK is taking, what can I do?
If you want to have your say in the direction CHEK is taking, your first step is to become a member. You can join CHEK by clicking here.
We have meetings where views are discussed and strategy debated. We encourage people to get involved.
You can also contact CHEK via our email address [email protected], however we get a lot of communications and cannot reply to them all.
Why have my comments been deleted from the website or from Facebook?
In order to remain politically neutral, we do not allow comments, posts or articles to appear on our Facebook page or group or on our website that openly support a political party. We apply this equally to all parties.
We have to preserve a delicate balance, and sometimes legitimate news articles will appear to favour one party over another, so in this case we will weigh up the public interest with the need to remain impartial on a case-by-case basis.
Where submissions are irrelevant to the topic or found to contravene the rules, they will be deleted.
How can I support CHEK?
CHEK exists because local people got together and decided to take a stand against what is happening. We need everyone’s support and are very grateful for every last thing people do to help us.