Health bosses asking public about changes to local NHS services in Winchester area (From Hampshire Chronicle)
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Health bosses asking public about changes to local NHS services in Winchester area
Bosses at Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Winchester, Basingstoke and Andover hospitals, have been working on proposals for a new emergency care unit since 2012.
Now GPs have a bigger say in the commissioning of services, local people are being consulted.
Speaking after a roadshow at the Royal Hampshire County Hospital, Dr Nigel Sylvester, medical director of West Hampshire Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “For the first time, GPs have more of a direct role in the planning and buying of services on behalf of the local population.
“The clinical commissioning group has an important role as a purchaser of care while the hospital trust’s role is to provide it. We all need to work together.
“The idea is to get a sense of what really matters to people. We have a responsibility to listen to the public.”
Planning for a new emergency hospital started at the end of 2012. It would take the sickest 20 per cent of patients, including major trauma victims, heart attacks and strokes.
The new unit would have specialist consultants on site 24-hours a day, seven days a week. Less serious A&E patients would go to a minor injury unit in Andover, the RHCH and Basingstoke hospitals.
Other more controversial proposals include moving consultant-led maternity care and the special care baby unit to the new emergency unit.
This would see maternity services at Winchester and Basingstoke downgraded to midwife-led centres for straightforward births. Andover already has a centre.
More complicated cases, including caesarean sections and pregnant women who feel safer in a hospital setting, would go to the new unit with obstetricians and high tech care.
However the maternity ward could be separate from the emergency hospital although linked and include a midwife-led centre for active births, say health chiefs.
Potential stumbling blocks include longer distances for visitors to travel.
Now HHFT, North Hampshire Clinical Commissioning Group and West Hampshire Clinical Commissioning Group, have launched a joint public consultation.
People are being asked to say what is most important for them in five different scenarios - non-urgent, urgent care, emergency care, visiting and maternity.
Health chiefs say the feedback will help them plan better services. A second formal public consultation will be held once the final proposals have been drawn up.
For a questionnaire: contact Hampshire.email@example.com tel: 01256 313062.
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