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  1. ITV Report

Worries as health leaders discuss closing four of Devon's community hospitals

Health leaders are discussing whether to close four of Devon's community hospitals as part of a shake-up of health services.

The South Devon and Torbay Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is considering shutting the units as part of what it says would be an improvement in local care.

Hospitals affected:

  • Bovey Tracey
  • Paignton
  • Dartmouth
  • Ashburton
Bovey Tracey is one of the community hospitals that could be affected Credit: ITV West Country

If the proposals go ahead 63 beds will be lose and the number of minor injury units will be reduced from seven to three - leaving just Newton Abbot, Totnes and Dawlish.

But, the CCG says, they will be open seven days a week, with more consistent opening hours and X-ray facilities.

If the CCG governing body and NHS England agree the draft proposals, a 12-week public consultation is likely to begin in May.

63
beds are likely to close if the proposals are given the go ahead.

Draft proposals by the CCG show a change of resources from bed-based hospital care to health and wellbeing teams supporting people within their local communities - as close to their homes as possible.

It says it wants to develop a new model of care, supporting people closer to their homes.

These ideas are about services rather than buildings.

Although there will be fewer MIUs, the ones that remain will be more effective and offer a real alternative to A&E, which will be very important for South Devon and Torbay.

In terms of general community care, I think we would all agree that people should only be admitted to hospital when medically necessary.

– Dr Nick Roberts, the CCG’s chief clinical officer