I am writing this letter in response to your article ‘Save Cavendish Hospital’ in the Advertiser recently.
On the front page you have written “44 beds with care in nursing or residential homes to replace another eight Fenton ward beds.’
On paper this sounds almost like a good idea replacing eight beds with 44, however, it fails to mention that overtime 84 community hospital beds will permanently close including closures at Newholme Hospital (Bakewell), Whitworth Hospital (Darley Dale), Clay Cross and Bolsover Hospital (Chesterfield).
I wonder if the CCG had asked the public if they would rather be treated in a community hospital or a care home which they would have chosen?
I would also like to point out that there will be no respite facilities at Walton Hospital in Chesterfield for dementia patients and that the rapid response team may say it is running seven days a week eight to eight, however, fails to mention that outside of the 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday hours there will only be skeleton staff to cover the service.
I am not sure how these ‘beds with care’ will manage the influx of patients when the care homes are already at breaking point as is social care. Changes need to be made to our existing care homes, increased funding for social services, the delays caused by continuing health care services and increased provision of home care agencies rather than trying to fix the one thing that isn’t broken - our community hospitals.
Maybe, in ten years’ time when everyone is in crisis someone will have bright idea to re-open community hospitals again.
L. M. Jackson