• Newton Poppleford residents oppose Ottery Hospital minor injuries unit and bed losses

    4th December 2014 | News | Claire
  • I was on the panel of speakers, alongside Dr Richard Mejzner – a Budleigh Salterton GP, who was speaking for the North, East and West Devon Clinical Commissioning Group (NEW Devon CCG), and Cllr Christine Channon – Budleigh Salterton ward Devon County Councillor, whose ward includes Newton Poppleford.

    The meeting was chaired by Roger Giles (East Devon District Councillor) who stepped in at short notice when the previous chairman dropped out.

    Dr Mejzner outlined the financial difficulties facing the CCG. He and Christine Channon referred to the changes at Budleigh Salterton Hospital which had resulted in the in-patient beds being closed and various day care services being introduced.

    There was a lively debate amongst the local people. Brian Woodley said that it was important that beds be retained at Ottery Hospital – many Newton Poppleford people had received exceptionally good care at Ottery Hospital over the years. This view was echoed by many other speakers.

    There was also concern about the frequency, quality and cost of the care at home service that the CCG wished to introduce to replace the in-patient beds.

    I gave an update and said that the proposals to close beds and to also close the minor injuries service had been opposed by the EDDC Scrutiny Committee, the DCC East Devon Locality Committee, and the DCC Health and Wellbeing Scrutiny Committee. I said that in my view a hospital without beds, was not a hospital at all.

    Philip Algar of Save our Ottery Hospital gave a rousing speech which was loudly applauded.

    It was proposed that the message should go to the CCG that beds should be retained at Ottery Hospital. This was supported unanimously.

    There was also support for the proposition that Devon should get its fair share of funding for health services.   

    Photograph:  Outside Ottery Hospital.