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Tuesday 20th March 2018

Hospitals being reconfigured

21st September 2007

Leading doctors have warned that some specialist hospital units may have to close and be moved to super regional hospitals in a bid to safeguard care.


The alert comes from The Academy of Royal Medical Colleges and covers areas of complex care such as paediatrics, specialist surgery and obstetrics.

In its review carried out for the Government across the 10 NHS regions in England and looking at how care can be delivered, the Academy believes it may still be possible for district general hospitals to keep their A&E units.

The reorganisation of services in hospitals across England has sparked some controversy and fears that some hospitals may close.

Professor Ian Gilmore, president of the Royal College of Physicians, who co-authored the report, said: “This report is about giving the best treatment in the best place at the right time. It is not about cuts in services, but about using our valuable human resources and buildings as effectively and efficiently as possible.?

A&E services have been at the focus of the debate but doctors say that it is specialist services that are most under threat, though the review could see some hospitals expanded to create regional centres of excellence.

Shadow health secretary Andrew Lansley welcomed the report but added that hospital closures were being driven by financial deficits and the European working time directive.

The Department of Health, which commissioned the study, said the report will be a useful contribution for consideration by the local clinical pathway groups under the umbrella of the NHS Next Stage Review.


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