Homes cash blow for Sidmouth Health Centre

PUBLISHED: 07:00 26 May 2011

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(c) Adam Gault

SIDMOUTH’S under-sized health centre won’t receive a single penny from the development of around 250 homes in Stowford that will see population swell by up to 700 residents.

SIDMOUTH’S under-sized health centre won’t receive a single penny from the development of around 250 homes in Stowford that will see the town’s population swell by up to 700 residents.

Doctors this week lamented a “missed opportunity” when they called for a new and bigger health facility.

They say a considerable amount of flat conversions within the town, weighted towards elderly occupancy, will also have a significant impact on health provisions.

“There is currently a significant amount of housing development occurring in the town,” said Dr Duncan Hall. “Normally this is taken into account when building applications are made. Formerly this has been in the process of East Devon District Council (EDDC) requesting details from various bodies, which include health and education, to determine the impact of a population increase.

“Unfortunately this information was not received by EDDC and the current developments in Stowford will not be taken into account with any future development we might propose.”

Sidmouth’s elderly population, of which 40 per cent of people are aged over 65, means patient visits and doctor consultations are above the national average, with GPs and nurses seeing more than 1,300 people a week.

The town’s health centre, pioneering when it opened in 1969, was built for six doctors and one nurse.

It now has the equivalent of eight full-time doctors, six nurses and five healthcare assistants.


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