Following the public meeting at Haslewey on 16th September, Waverley Borough Councillors had a presentation from the local Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) the night after.
What they’re driving at is not easy to follow but central Government has issued an edict that standardised Urgent Treatment Centres should be developed to ease pressure on A&E departments across the country.
These UTCs are to have specific standardised criteria, which at present, Haslemere Hospital Minor Injuries Unit does not meet.
As a Surrey CCG, they also don’t like that about 1/3 of the 7,500 patients per annum at Haslemere come from Hampshire or Sussex.
Closure of Haslemere Hospital is therefore a real possibility.
Town & Waverley Councillor Simon Dear, who was at the meeting said:
“The basics of a new Urgent Treatment Centre are already at Haslemere. It has GPs on site, an x-ray room (ie lead-lined), a pharmacy on site, facility for ambulances, room physically to expand and experienced staff.
Rather than close it down, we should be using what’s at the existing Unit to push for Haslemere to be upgraded to one of the new centres, or at very least exempted from closure given the service it has long provided to the area, and can continue to provide. It’s already taking thousands of people a year away from Guildford A&E.”
The CCG is going through what they’re obliged to do – a ‘consultation’. They intend to long list ideas, short list them, re-consult and make a decision next summer.
We’ve got until then to make sure Haslemere Hospital stays open. Jeremy Hunt, our local MP, is fully briefed, has visited site and is on the case.