Circle-Managed Hinchingbrooke May Lose Critical A&E Services
The accident and emergency department operated by the Hinchingbrooke Health Care NHS Trust, the only privately run NHS hospital, is reportedly facing closure.
According to the Health Service Journal, the downgrading of the Hinchingbrooke Hospital’s A&E department is now being “actively discussed”.
The chief strategy officer at Cambridgeshire and Peterborough CCG has denied plans are being considered, however, he went on to add that the scenario could materialise in the future.
The news comes after reports from the region suggested its A&E departments at Addenbrooke’s, Hinchingbrooke’s and Peterborough are all under significant pressure due to the demand from patients.
A Circle spokesman said that the company, which runs the Hinchingbrooke Health Care NHS Trust, would play a “full part in the discussions led by the CCG” and that it was “open minded about what form of future services will give them the care they need”.
Reports suggest that the facility will be made into an elective hub to offer new services to the community if the A&E department is closed.
The pressure on accident and emergency departments in the region is well known, which makes is extremely concerning to hear reports that the facility at Hinchingbrooke may be in danger of closing.
“Patient care should always be a top priority and it is vital those requiring emergency treatment are able to access it in their local area. Closing the A&E services at Hinchingbrooke will lead to patients being forced to travel greater distances to access the treatment they require, which may impact their chances of survival and recovery.
“In our work we have seen the impact delays relating to emergency treatment can have on individuals and it is crucial plans for the accident and emergency department are discussed thoroughly and any action taken does not have a negative impact on the treatment available to patients.”
Guy Forster - Partner