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Public urged to have their say on proposed changes to services at local community hospitals

Public urged to have their say on proposed changes to services at local community hospitals

An eight-week period of consultation has begun about specific health services in mid and south Essex.  

The local NHS is seeking views and ideas on proposals for future arrangements for inpatient services at our community hospitals, freestanding midwife-led birthing unit, and other patient services provided at St Peter’s Hospital, Maldon. 

The consultation will run from 25 January to 21 March 2024.  

The proposals we are asking people to consider are:  

  • potential changes to the places where we provide some community hospital intermediate care and stroke rehabilitation services,  
  • making permanent the temporary move of the freestanding midwife-led birthing unit from St Peter’s Hospital to, Maldon to the William Julien Courtauld Unit at St Michael’s, Braintree. 
  • the possibility of moving all other patient services at St Peter’s Hospital, Maldon to other locations, mostly in and around Maldon. 

Dr Matthew Sweeting, Interim System Medical Director for NHS Mid and South Essex Integrated Care Board (ICB), said: “It is essential that we are thinking about how services can best serve our growing population now, and in the future. We want to make sure everyone can receive the care they need in a safe environment, staffed by a highly skilled workforce, so that everyone has the best chance of a good health outcome.

“Our clinical teams have been developing different proposals around these services so that we can openly share information through a wide public consultation. It’s important we involve people in any decisions that might affect them.

“We’re a long way from making decisions. Getting feedback from local people is vital. We are keen to explain to local people the challenges we have been facing, and the different ways we think we could make services better. These are not easy decisions. We want to have as much information as possible and to explore all possibilities.  

“There are lots of ways people can share their thoughts about the proposals and contribute their views. I would like to encourage as many people as possible to get involved.”

How people can get involved 

People can visit a dedicated engagement platform – MSE Virtual Views – to find out about the proposals and plans, to share their views, and ask questions.

Access MSE Virtual Views

Over the next eight weeks, people can get involved by:

  • Completing a survey 
  • Joining one of eight planned discussion groups being held across the region – in Maldon, Basildon, Chelmsford, Southend, Thurrock and Burnham on Crouch.  
  • Joining one of six online discussion sessions. 
  • Joining a public consultation hearing that we’re holding in Maldon. This is a formal event, and people will need to submit their questions in advance.  
  • Joining a session being run by a voluntary sector organisation. These sessions are for people that might find it difficult to attend one of the other public events, and/or for people that need extra support to understand the proposals and share their views.  
  • Talking to us through our social media channels or at a drop-in event. 
  • Emailing us at: mseics.getinvolved@nhs.net 
  • Phoning us at: 01268 594350 
  • Writing to us at: FAO: Community Capacity Consultation NHS Mid and South Essex ICB, PO Box 6483, Basildon, SS14 0UG 

All events will be promoted through MSE Virtual Views, local media, websites, social media channels, and through local NHS partners and community organisations. 

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