Community hospital threatened with closure

August 24, 2007 5:49 PM

MP for Cambridge, David Howarth, has described plans to close Brookfields Hospital as "cost cutting"

David commented as the pre-consultation on the future of older people's care at the site was announced.

Information released by Cambridgeshire Primary Care Trust today discusses proposals to remove in-patient services from Rupert Brooke, Frances Cornford and Lord Byron wards in order to save £500,000 each year and invest in community based services. The health trust insists that maintaining the current service is not an option. It hopes that many of those currently in these wards could receive their rehabilitation at home while those who still require in-patient care may be moved to other community hospitals in Cambridgeshire.

David commented:

"These proposals are about cutting costs not improving services.

"Vulnerable people living in Cambridge may be moved outside the city for their treatment. These are vulnerable people who would be forced to live many miles from their friends and family for long periods of care and recovery."

The pre-consultation proposes that continuing care patients at Brookfields Hospital should be moved to care homes where the PCT admits that standards of care may not be as high as at Brookfields.

David added:

"The PCT is admitting that it thinks that the standard of continuing care in Cambridge is too high. Equity across Cambridgeshire should mean raising standards elsewhere not cutting services in the city.

David Howarth with Romsey Councillor Catherine Smart outside Davison House, Brookfields Hospital

David Howarth with Romsey Councillor Catherine Smart outside the threatened hospital

"What will happen to those patients currently using Brookfield's continuing care beds? Moving these high-need patients to a nursing home will cause a great deal of stress and anxiety and the PCT even admits that the standard of care will be lower."

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