The formal public consultation on the plans, which include relocating some services from Southlands to Worthing Hospital, finishes at noon on Friday, April 29.
There have been seven public meetings hosted by Western Sussex Hospitals NHS representatives in Shoreham (twice), Littlehampton, Worthing, Southwick, Bognor Regis and Chichester and more than 250 people have turned up to listen and have their say.
Health bosses say the changes being debated, called Service Redesign for Quality in West Sussex – Our proposals for better care, are designed to provide improved inpatient orthopaedic, elderly care and eye services at St Richard’s, Worthing and Southlands hospitals, and better community services.
The main changes include:
- Relocating inpatient orthopaedics and elderly care from Southlands to Worthing Hospital.
- Providing an extra 60 beds and building two “laminar flow” operating theatres for orthopaedic surgery at at Worthing Hospital.
- Developing Southlands as a centre for outpatients, diagnostics and day surgery.
- Relocating ophthalmology services from Worthing Hospital to Southlands and St Richard’s Hospitals.
- Investing to provide new services and extra beds in the community, especially “step down” beds for people who have had a long stay in hospital.
Dr Phillip Barnes, medical director at Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “The public meetings have been lively, and not always easy for those of us sitting on the platform, but they have been extremely useful in showing us where people have concerns, and where we might need to do more to address these concerns.”
To make comment, visit www.westernsussexhospitals.nhs.uk, call 01903 285222 ext 4038, or email [email protected]