Hospital And Ward Closure Concerns Across England And Wales

Patients In Essex And Cornwall Among Those Affected, According To Reports

24.02.2014

The future of hospitals and individual wards in regions across England and Wales has been put in the spotlight following a number of reports related to potential closures.

A number of high-profile closures have been making headlines in recent weeks, with proposals to close inpatient beds at Cardigan Hospital leading to a petition outlining opposition to the plans being submitted to the Welsh Assembly.

In addition, protests have been held at Salford Royal Hospital in relation to the potential ward closures in the area being considered by Greater Manchester West Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust.

Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust has also backed proposals for the closure of Poltair Hospital in Penzance, with a consultation being carried out into the plans to move outpatient clinics and staff to West Cornwall Hospital and other sites in the town.

Finally, news that Serco is planning to end its contract to manage Braintree Community Hospital in Essex has led to some concerns that the site could be closed.

Expert Opinion
While it has been made clear in recent years that the NHS – like all public services – would be facing cuts in funding to various services due to the Government’s austerity, we have repeatedly stated that it is vital this does not impact on the care and support offered to the general public.

"A huge number of people across communities are reliant on health and social care provisions being local to them and these reports, along with many others, highlight just some of the concerns held over ward and hospital closures.

"It is vital that such decisions are always made with care and attention, so that patients are always able to access the care and support they need in a timely manner.

"We would urge local residents with concerns regarding such matters to both campaign and also consider the potential for legal advice in order to protect NHS services that communities regard as vital."
Anne-Marie Irwin, Associate