Public pack hospital meeting

PUBLISHED: 08:00 27 November 2013

Clevedon Community Hospital

Clevedon Community Hospital

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EMOTIONAL pleas were made at a meeting with health bosses in the hope of convincing them to retain patient beds at Clevedon Hospital.

A public meeting on Thursday saw more than 120 people pack into Clevedon’s community centre to give their views on the future provision of healthcare at the Old Street hospital.

North Somerset Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), responsible for deciding what services are provided across the district, is looking into future options for the facility.

One of these is to retain its 18 inpatient beds while expanding outpatient services slightly. Another is to remove the beds, with inpatients then placed in nursing homes instead, allowing more room for outpatient clinics.

The latter has angered many people who value the fact North Somerset patients can stay near friends and family while receiving 24-hour hospital care.

Thursday’s meeting was organised by independent body, Healthwatch North Somerset, which will report back to the CCG and Healthwatch England to ensure the public’s views are heard by decision makers.

Treasurer of the League of Friends of Clevedon Hospital, John Powell, who is campaigning against any loss of beds said: “At last, people of the catchment area of Clevedon hospital are beginning to realise the beds in the hospital are under threat.

“The fantastic turn out struck me. People were queuing to get in and some people got very emotional. I’ve never seen anything like it.”

During a straw poll, every audience member raised their hand in favour of keeping inpatient beds at the hospital.

Healthwatch North Somerset chairman Georgie Bigg said: “The meeting brought people out and talking about their local services.

“The message from Clevedon people was, in the main, they want to keep the hospital as it is.”

Healthwatch North Somerset plans to hold further public meetings to encourage more people from areas such as Nailsea and Portishead to put their views forward.

A report detailing the CCG’s preferred option for future services at Clevedon Hospital is due to be unveiled at the next meeting of its governing body, being held on December 17.

* Anyone wishing to give their views on the hospital’s future options can contact Healthwatch North Somerset on 01275 851400 or email contact@healthwatchnorthsomerset.co.uk


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