Royston Hospital Friends to plan action against possible closure

Talkswill be held this week by The Royston Hospital Friends to discuss the possible closure of the town’s community hospital.

Members will put their heads together at a private meeting and will announce a plan of action after Thursday.

The Crow revealed last week that the primary care trust is proposing to find an independent care provider to redevelop Royston Hospital which could see the site closed for at least three years.

As a result of the shake-up, the hospital could be closed to inpatients next year and outpatient services could be transferred.

Peter Homent, treasurer of the Friends, said: “We’re obviously very concerned at the proposal for the hospital without any replacement for the facilities it provides.

“If the hospital does close in the current plans we want to make sure there’s something planned to replace facilities.

“We’re fearful decisions have already been made before consultations have taken place.

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“We’re not against change but we want to make sure the change is for the best.”

The earliest a new facility on the site could open is 2015. It would act as a residential nursing home as well as a centre for intermediate care, but if this goes ahead the number of beds would be slashed to half of what is currently provided.

Services could be provided on the current site or in an alternative location.

A public consultation is now under way and is due to end on February 3.