Campaigners fighting the proposed closure of the Spencer Ward at Buxton’s Cavendish Hospital have drawn up their own counter proposals in a bid to transform it into a centre of excellence.
As part of the ongoing Better Care Closer to Home review, Cavendish could lose its ten specialist mental health beds on the Spencer Ward. Care would instead be provided in the community, with any admissions to Chesterfield’s Walton Hospital.
Eight community hospital beds on the Fenton Ward would become specialist rehabilitation beds. Across the county there would be 44 Beds with Care in nursing or residential homes to replace another eight Fenton Ward beds which are also under threat.
Campaigners, however, have devised The Western Hub plan to create a specialist mental health assessment unit at the hospital, retaining its current gold star standard and keeping patients in their community.
Buxton resident Keith Horncastle looked after his wife with dementia for six years and is backing the alternative plans.
He said: “I think closing services and making people travel for miles upsets the much-needed routine and reality that people with dementia so desperately cling to.
“The Spencer Ward has already proved it is good enough with the gold star standards so it makes sense to keep the staff and the services which are already in place and just build on that to create a new hub.”
The plans for the Western Hub would see patients and their carers going on the My Memory Matters course to make joint decisions about care.
Following diagnosis every person with dementia should be assigned by their GP or consultant, a named member of the Older Adult Community Mental Health Team, which can provide continuity to patients where the proposed Dementia Rapid Response Team could not. Keith added: “If implemented the plans would enhance existing services, and ensure joined- up care closer to home for High Peak in a way that services based at Walton Hospital could not achieve.”
Commenting on The Western Hub proposal, Miles Scott, chief finance officer at NHS Hardwick Clinical Commissioning Group commented on behalf of NHS North Derbyshire Clinical Commissioning Group and NHS Hardwick Clinical Commissioning Group said he welcomed any suggestions or alternative ideas put forward as part of the consultation on Better Care Closer to Home.
He added: “These will be considered as part of the overall feedback prior to any final recommendations.”