Have your say on Heatherwood Hospital's futureBy Becky Barnes
June 26, 2012
Health bosses want to hear your views on their ideas for the future of Heatherwood Hospital.
NHS Berkshire has produced a summary of their “emerging vision”, which will help form a public consultation about healthcare in Berkshire in the autumn.
The plans include downsizing the hospital, selling off some land and moving some of its services elsewhere.
In particular, the suggestion is for Heatherwood to become the sole centre for planned surgery such as hip and knee replacements, with most outpatients services relocating and for the Ascot Birth Centre to remain closed.
An NHS spokesman said: “This would be about providing high quality patient care closer to home wherever possible and for Heatherwood to remain open and modernise.”
The PCT is proposing that the old and outdated buildings could be replaced with a surgical hospital with surplus land sold off to invest in patient care.
The plan suggests the Minor Injuries Unit could be moved to Bracknell HealthSpace, with the rehabilitation ward closing when community services are enhanced to help patients recover at home.
It is also suggested that the psychotherapy service be relocated so it can serve all of Berkshire.
Charles Waddicor, chief executive of NHS Berkshire, said: “A full public consultation on suggested improvements and changes to health services in east Berkshire is planned to start in autumn 2012.
“Before then we want to share our developing ideas and get feedback on them to help us shape the final proposals.”
The plans being shared with the public are not in detail at this stage as the NHS said they want to hear from local people first.
Philippa Slinger, chief executive of Heatherwood and Wexham Park Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We are looking forward to getting feedback from local people on our emerging vision.
“We really want to hear what they have to say.”
The document is being distributed to people in town centres and is also available online with a questionnaire attached which must be filled out by Monday, July 30.
To read the full Shaping the Future vision document and give feedback visit www.berkshire.nhs.uk/shapingthefuture
NHS representatives will be giving out hard copies of the document and questionnaires on Tuesday, July 10, at Heatherwood Hospital, Ascot, from midday to 5.30pm.