By Matthew Gooding
Thursday, January 17, 2013
ROYSTON’S MP is pressing for answers on what sort of health services will be provided in the town once its hospital closes down.
Oliver Heald has been in touch with CATCH, the clinical commissioning body for Cambridge, to ask whether extra hospital services will be provided in Royston under their leadership.
CATCH is due to become the commissioner for health services in Royston from April 2013, and is involved in the process that will see the hospital close and be replaced by a private care facility with intermediate NHS beds.
The site, on London Road, was put up for sale before Christmas, and plans would see services transferred to the health centre, in Melbourn Street, which will be expanded.
Mr Heald hopes that NHS services can still be provided on both sites, and said he is particularly concerned about the future of treatment for the diabetic.
He said: “I know that general practitioners locally have wanted to see improved diabetic services and it would be excellent if existing services could be expanded in the new buildings.
“I am continuing to press the authorities to see if Royston is to receive extra services in the new buildings currently being planned.”
The sale of the hospital is being overseen by NHS Hertfordshire, which currently controls the site, and Mr Heald is liasing with the health authority as well the Friends of Royston Hospital and campaign group Royston Hospital Action Group (RHAG).
Susan Ackroyd, from RHAG, said: “We agree with Oliver Heald that the London Road site should continue to provide healthcare services and we consider that it should be expanded to support Addenbrooke’s Hospital and our local GPs.
“There is doubt as to whether the Melbourn Road Health Centre should be extended as the money for that could be better deployed in a purpose-designed centre on London Road. We believe the freehold of the site should remain in public ownership for these purposes.
“We are meeting CATCH next week and will be pushing for our ideas to be incorporated into the plans.”