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Protesters gather in vain save Community Hospitals

Protesters gathered outside a meeting of Devon health bosses this afternoon, in a final attempt to persuade health bosses to save community hospital beds.

But their calls were heard in vain as Devon Clinical Commissioning Group agreed to reduce the number of community hospital inpatient units from 10 to seven.

Community hospitals at Axminster, Crediton and Ottery St Mary will no longer have overnight inpatient beds, although Ottery St Mary Hospital will have 15 overnight stroke rehabilitation beds.

The move was made in an attempt to secure nursing care close to people’s homes and the Group says it will be a platform for further review and reform of community services, aiming to treat more people in their own home where it is safe and appropriate to do so.

The decision also means none of the community hospitals will close. Health and social care hubs with a range of outpatient services, day surgery and other health and social care services will be developed at hospitals without inpatient beds.

Protester Claire Wright has this to say:

The decision was taken at NHS Northern, Eastern and Western Devon Clinical Commissioning Group’s (NEW Devon CCG) Governing Body meeting today.