Shaftesbury’s Westminster Memorial Hospital beds will be saved from closure, if the governing board of the Dorset Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) agree the proposals on September 20.
The recommendation that in-patient’s beds would be removed were revised due to travel and transport, access to other community beds, and the rural nature of the community area and community isolation.
Additional housing developments planned were also considered.
The proposal now, to be agreed at the September 20 meeting, is to maintain a community hub with beds in Shaftesbury while working with the local community on a sustainable model for future services, based on health and care needs of the locality.
Cllr Anthony Austin, chair of Shaftesbury Town Westminster Memorial Working Group, described the proposal as ‘extremely gratifying’.
“If the proposal is ratified on September 20, it will mean the massive support for these changes will have been justified.
“It also means the community has the opportunity to work together to create the hospital facilities we need. The prospects of how to achieve this are both awesome and exciting. ”
MP welcomes hospital decision
North Dorset MP Simon Hoare has welcomed the recommendation by the Dorset Clinical Commissioning Group to retain beds at Westminster Memorial Hospital in Shaftesbury, and to explore commissioning a new health hub.
“There was a huge local campaign to retain the beds and the CCG has been as good as its word. There will be huge relief among constituents,” he said.