Ottery Hospital set for bed losses

OTTERY St Mary Hospital is set to lose seven of its bed spaces.

OTTERY St Mary Hospital is set to lose seven of its bed spaces.

Concerned councillor Roger Giles fears that Devon Primary Care Trust (DPCT) plans to 'close' the beds in January as part of a cost-cutting exercise.

The DPCT told the Herald that six beds will be closed as a temporary measure but they can be re-opened at short notice if necessary.

"Alarmed" Mr Giles said: "Temporary measures have a habit of becoming permanent, and authorities intending to introduce unpopular decisions will often do so by initially describing them as this."

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Mr Giles added bed closures in the town will be a massive blow to hospitalised parish residents, and friends and relatives who usually visit them.

"It is vitally important that Ottery Hospital is fully available for use. Residents of Ottery, Tipton, West Hill, and the other communities, must continue to be treated here - not in a distant and difficult to-get-to hospital," he said.

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Mr Giles has called for a full public consultation over any DPCT plans and want a detailed break-down of their potential impact.

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