Edward Hain Hospital Closure? – not taking this lying down!
“So Edward Hain Hospital will close permanently. We won’t take this lying down. We must fight back.”
Andrew George successfully led the parliamentary campaign against the closure of Edward Hain Hospital in 1997. He is prepared to help lead the fight back against the loss of the Hospital now. A decision to make permanent the ‘temporary’ closure four and a half years ago is expected to be confirmed in weeks. Although he accepts the building may be closed he believes our local community deserves a new purpose-built community hospital.
Andrew, who attended the Hospital review workshop with NHS officials last week has been galvanizing support amongst community leaders for a campaign to fight back. He told NHS officials that their review exercise was like “flogging a dead horse”.
Andrew said, “It’s clear the Government has succeeded in its effort to close the hospital. Now we must start a campaign for a purpose-built community hospital to replace the inpatient beds and NHS services lost at Edward Hain four and a half years ago.
“Sadly the Edward Hain will never re-open as a Hospital. The community has been dragged through a long and slow process; which asked the wrong question and ended with predictable disappointment. All they did was to confirm that an out-of-date older building would never meet the exacting financial and safety standards required for a new modern-day service.
“The question should have been, “How do we reinstate a community hospital with inpatient beds and community hospital services which would meet the needs of this area?”. That would have been a more valuable exercise than the one they adopted.
“We’re justifiably concerned that patients in this area have not received and will not in future receive the services they deserve and as were provided at Edward Hain. They’ve replaced excellent nurse managed 24/7 inpatient beds with the out-of-site, out-of-mind community services which we know are already under-resourced and over-stretched. Not all rehab and end-of-life care is best provided in a home setting when the support isn’t there.
“Our community needs the inpatient beds and the range of out-patient services of a good community hospital. Rehab beds with support physiotherapy, OT and other services and end of life care beds are part of the range of services better provided by a community hospital than by the acute or care sectors.
“I fought with others to keep our hospital open. Together our communities won our campaigns. But Edward Hain was closed within months of the Conservatives winning this seat.
“Although it won’t be re-opened on the existing Edward Hain site we must fight to re-establish a community hospital somewhere else locally.”