PLANS to re-shape hospital services in Worcestershire are continuing to move ahead.
A report into the long-running project working to cut costs for Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust – the organisation running Worcestershire Acute Hospital, Kidderminster Hospital and Redditch’s Alexandra Hospital – was presented at a meeting of the trust’s board on Wednesday, March 26.
Members heard the multi-agency programme board running the project had been expanded to involve a wider membership and a transport survey was being carried out at the three hospitals this week.
A long-awaited report into A&E services in the county was presented in January, recommending the most seriously injured or unwell patients should be taken to Worcestershire Royal Hospital.
Although it had been suggested the A&E department at the Alexandra Hospital could be closed to cut costs, this idea was thrown out over concerns people living in the north of the county would be left with a lower standard of service to those in the south.
The review also recommended consultant-led maternity services and paediatric services should be centralised in Worcester and that public transport links between the three hospitals should be reviewed.
Deputy chief executive Chris Tidman said the review was important but would not serve as a quick-fix to all the trust’s problems.
“I’m not expecting it to solve all of the trust’s financial problems,” he said.
The financial implications of the plans are currently being examined are expected to be revealed in April, with a public consultation on course to be launched in the late summer or autumn.
A new website containing information about the review has also been launched this week at www.worcsfuturehospitals.co.uk.