MP welcomes Weston Hospital trusts merger plan
have been revealed to merge the hospital trust which shut Weston
Hospital's A&E overnight because of staff shortages with a neighbouring
General Hospital A&E has been closed between 10pm and 8am since
July last year.
Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust (UHBT) and Weston Area Health
NHS Trust (WAHT) said a merger could take place in spring 2019.
John Penrose said it was a "big step" towards solving
potential merger builds on a formal partnership between the two
trusts, implemented in May 2017.
Woolley, chief executive of UHBT, told Burnham-On-Sea.com: "Our
shared goal remains to ensure hospital-based services in Bristol
and North Somerset provide high-quality care to patients and families
which are clinically and financially sustainable. We believe that
a merger with Weston Area Health NHS Trust could help achieve this
Rimmer, chief executive of WAHT, added: "We believe we could make
more rapid progress and improve our long-term sustainability by
formally merging with UHBT."
General Hospital serves more than 200,000 people, including many
people in the Burnham-On-Sea area, and has been closed overnight
since July 2017 because it could not guarantee safe levels of staffing
with serious and life-threatening emergencies in Weston were told
to dial 999 and ambulances would take them to Bristol or Taunton.
Save Weston A&E campaign group has organised protests outside the
hospital, claiming the closure is putting lives at risk.
MP James Heappey told Burnham-On-Sea.com: "I very much welcome
the announcement today of the intention for the Weston Area Health
Trust and the University Hospitals Bristol to merge."
challenge in Weston for many years has been that the WAHT has lacked
the size to attract staff and to deliver some services. This merger
therefore represents a great opportunity to secure the future of
Weston Hospital and I hope that the work that will now be undertaken
by the trusts leads to a merger. Im confident that that will
be the best outcome for my constituents."
Weston-super-Mare MP John Penrose hailed the move as way of "making
hiring staff for Weston Hospital far, far easier".
a big step towards solving the overnight closure of Weston's A&E
department, and securing the long-term future of our hospital."