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'Save West Cumberland Hospital' petition hits 10,000 signatures

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An official petition to protect the future of services at the West Cumberland Hospital in Whitehaven, is now guaranteed a response from the government.

10,000
signatures have been made on the official government petition.

5,590 signatures were made by people living in Copeland, while 3,099 signatures are from Workington residents.

A public consultation on the future of healthcare in Cumbria, led by the government-appointed Success Regime, began this week. The process will discuss the regime's 'preferred' options - which includes downgrading maternity and emergency services at the hospital.

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WATCH: More carers needed to support adults with learning disabilities

The search is on for more carers to offer support for people with learning disabilities in Cumbria.

The 'Sharing Lives' scheme is being run by the County Council and matches vulnerable adults, with people willing to open up their homes to them for respite, short term care and long term placement.

Like a form of foster care for adults, it allows people to live as part of a family environment within their communities:

Council call for people to join adult carers scheme

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The search is on for new carers to provide support for adults with learning disabilities in Cumbria.

The County Council is looking for people to join it's 'shared lives' scheme which sees them providing respite, day support or long term care for others in their community needing social care.

To open your home to these guys is so rewarding. You'd never look back. I've never looked back in all the ten years. I don't think I'll ever retire. I'd never retire. I'll always look after them."

– Libby Potts, Shared Lives scheme participant

WATCH: Health boss says changes to health services are essential

Chairman of the government-appointed Success Regime, Sir Neil McKay, says changes to health services across Cumbria are essential, following the publication of a controversial consultation document.

Downgrading the West Cumberland Hospital's maternity unit, centralising stroke services in Carlisle and cutting beds from community hospitals are some options being considered.

The proposals are part of a new three month consultation called The Future of Healthcare in West, North and East Cumbria.

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Health bosses to face public in maternity row meeting

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Concerns over the future of maternity services at the West Cumberland Hospital in Whitehaven will be discussed at a public meeting tonight.

The government appointed Success Regime and the North Cumbria University Hospitals Trust is looking at changing services at the hospital - one option being considered is to cut consultant-led maternity services.

Copeland MP, Jamie Reed, will chair the meeting and Success Regime chairman and Sir Neil McKay, alongside other health bosses, will face questions from the public.

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