From a Correspondent:
“It is welcome that the new Nightingale hospital will be used to test the backlog of worried sick cancer patients, but Matt Hancock has already stated it will also be used to relieve the winter pressures on the Royal Devon and Exeter acute Hospital. Why on earth are they not reopening the beds in our excellent community hospitals, which are bedded in the communities they serve? As well as step down care they had a great reputation for end of life care close to home, where this was not suitable at home. As people near the end of life there should be a sensitive conversation about where they would prefer to die. Most would not choose to die in an industrialised barracks. Ottery St. Mary hospital had an excellent reputation for end of life care. Simon Jupp, MP for East Devon had his photograph taken in front of Ottery Hospital which was used in his election publicity, yet in parliament last week in an exchange with Matt Contact concerning the Exeter Nightingale Hospital he just smiled in agreement and made no case for our Community Hospitals.
I have an elderly relative with cancer who is nearing the end of his life. He lives very close to Ottery Hospital. His wife, who does not drive, is also very elderly and has a catalogue of chronic health problems, would be unable to visit him in Exeter. Keeping the beds closed in our East Devon towns amounts to political dogma, while Matt Hancock presides over the ownership of NHS Property Services.”