An interesting comment about Lewes Hospital


Last Tuesday there was a discussion in the House of Commons under the headline of “Unavoidably Small Hospitals” and one of the people who spoke was Maria Caulfield who at that stage was a Minister in the Department of Health and Social Care. She was speaking about her own location and she rather strangely stated “My constituency does not have a hospital, so my constituents have to travel” which seemed very strange given that there is a hospital in Lewes. Her next comment however reversed her statement because she said “We do, however, have the Lewes Victoria Hospital—it is a small community hospital, not an unavoidably small hospital—and my constituents really value its work.” The full paragraph of her comment is below and indeed the rest of her words and the whole debate can be obtained from here.

I reassure colleagues that the ministerial team recognises the worth of small hospitals. As my hon. Friend Derek Thomas said, it is not just about the value they bring to their local communities, but the pressure they take off the wider health service in their regions, which we have seen particularly clearly in recent months and years. When we had covid hot and cold sites in the NHS, smaller hospitals were able to work and function and take some of the pressure off larger hospitals that had large outbreaks of covid. While I acknowledge that small hospitals are more expensive to run, their added value cannot be underestimated. My constituency does not have a hospital, so my constituents have to travel. We do, however, have the Lewes Victoria Hospital—it is a small community hospital, not an unavoidably small hospital—and my constituents really value its work. If they did not have it, they would have to go to the big hospitals in Brighton, Eastbourne or even Hastings, so I am on the same page as many of the Members here.

About ianchisnall

I am passionate about the need for public policies to be made accessible to everyone, especially those who want to improve the wellbeing of their communities. I am particularly interested in issues related to crime and policing as well as health services and strategic planning.
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