Date set to decide future of Derbyshire’s hospitals

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Health chiefs have said a decision on the future of dementia wards and community beds at hospitals across the north of the county will be made this month.

The Governing Body of NHS Hardwick Clinical Commissioning Group and the Governing Body of NHS North Derbyshire Clinical Commissioning Group will meet in public on Monday 24 July, 7pm at County Hall in Matlock to discuss the feedback received during the Better Care Closer to Home consultation and make decisions on the proposals that were put forward.

Wards at Buxton’s Cavendish Hospital, Bakewell’s Newholme Hospital and Bolsover Hospital are all under threat of closure or operating reduced services.

Dr Steve Lloyd, Clinical Chair of NHS Hardwick Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “The proposals put forward for consultation were the result of years of research and discussion with the public and colleagues in local health and social care services and the voluntary sector.

“The public consultation process was invaluable and really helped us to understand what matters most to people. Since the consultation ended, a huge amount of work has taken place to help understand what the feedback we received means for the proposals put forward in Better Care Closer to Home.”

The proposed service changes would include significantly expanding ‘care at home’ teams. These are community-based teams of health and care staff who will work together locally, to care seamlessly for older people in or near their own homes.

•Permanently closing 16 beds at Bolsover, 16 beds at Clay Cross, 16 beds at Newholme, 20 beds at Whitworth, 16 beds at Cavendish.

•Providing 8 specialist rehabilitation beds in the west of North Derbyshire and 20 at Chesterfield Royal Hospital.

•Permanently closing older persons’ mental health community hospital beds; 10 beds at Cavendish, and 10 beds at Newholme.

•Establish a centre of excellence at Walton Hospital

Consultation feedback was received in the form of survey response forms, written and email correspondence, notes and recordings from public meetings, petitions, verbal feedback, online comments and the media. In total 2,260 questionnaires and circa 100 letters and emails were received.

On completion of the consultation all the responses were analysed by Dr Steven Wilkinson, an independent academic from the University of East Anglia.

Dr Ben Milton, Clinical Chair of NHS North Derbyshire Clinical Commissioning Group, added: “I would like to thank everyone who took the time to get involved and share their thoughts about what is most important to them, and for the many constructive ideas and suggestions we received.

“Every single piece of feedback has been reviewed and analysed ahead of the 24 July meeting. This analysis will be the foundation for the decision-making process.”