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Last chance to have a say on future of Poltair Hospital

By The Cornishman  |  Posted: January 10, 2014

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THE final drop-in session to discuss the future of Poltair Hospital is on Wednesday, January 15, at the one stop shop at St Clare, Penzance.

It is the last in a series of four consultation events about the future of the community hospital, which has been shut since October 2012.

Members of the public have been presented with five options, only one of them involving the retention of (five) inpatient beds at Poltair, and two of them not foreseeing any future for the hospital at all.

Around 50 people attended the first public meeting at St John's Hall before Christmas, along with a ten-strong team from the NHS Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group.

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At that meeting, there seemed general agreement that West Cornwall should have inpatient beds to care for the frail and elderly based in the Penzance area, in addition to Edward Hain Hospital at St Ives.

The Bellair clinic and former Bolitho maternity unit on Penzance promenade were suggested as possible sites.

It was also accepted that the hospital was outdated and much of the focus of the meeting was on what would happen to the proceeds of any future sale of Poltair.

There was confirmation that the proceeds would go straight to the NHS – owners of the property since it was gifted to the service by the Bolitho family – and that there was no guarantee that the money would be used for health services in West Cornwall.

Dr Neil Walden, Penwith Locality Lead, did say that efforts had been made to forge links with the NHS property services and these would continue in the future.

"It is unlikely that we will change government policy but we will continue to make representations," he said.

Consultation documents are still available from NHS Kernow; GP practices in west Cornwall; libraries; community hospitals; pharmacies; council one stop shops; West Cornwall Hospital; and online at kernowccg.nhs.uk/poltair

The final drop-in session takes place at Committee Room 1, One Stop Shop, St Clare, Penzance, on Wednesday, January 15, from 4pm to 8pm.

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  • Phil_JDW  |  January 24 2014, 4:16PM

    Poltair Community Hospital – Have Your Say - this is what I said:- Well, with reference to the review on the future use of Poltair Community Hospital, my brief 'say' would be as follows:- Treliske Hospital – let's start here, where things appear anything but right. Staff are clearly stretched to the limit and I have witnessed first hand problems that have arisen – both for staff and their families. West Cornwall Hospital – because Treliske is overstretched there is clearly a need for a number of hospitals about the county, similar to WCH, but with their roles expanded to provide more 'acute' services for patients. At present WCH appears to take many patients that in different circumstances would be cared for in a community hospital, but there is concern that for some they don't perhaps receive the type of care required. A simple example is that patients who need to get out of bed and be walked are just left in bed, as presumably there's insufficient staff numbers to provide such attention. Poltair Community Hospital – from my perspective there is a definite need to have such a hospital in the Penzance area, with there similar hospitals serving other big towns about the county. Looking at the 'Options' in the recently issued brochure, Option 2 is the only one that's worthy of further consideration, as at least it mentions five inpatient beds. However, developing this further I would suggest that five is is too few and perhaps, despite mention of 10 beds being discounted on the grounds of patient safety, this could be looked at again. Indeed, as our population live longer availability of even more such beds will surely become a must – whether it is at Poltair or elsewhere in Penzance, demanding perhaps 'new build'.