Summit to discuss consultants’ plan for Weston hospital’s A&E

Weston General Hospital and A & E Department.

Weston General Hospital and A & E Department. - Credit: Archant

A proposal which could see Weston General Hospital’s A&E department reopen overnight will be discussed at a summit on Saturday.

Cllr Richard Nightingale has called the meeting to enable the public to find out more about the model which has been put forward by consultants from Weston General Hospital.

The plan involves inpatient teams supporting emergency doctors and the consultants’ body believes it would enable the A&E to reopen over night permanently.

MORE: CCG defends planned changes to Weston General Hospital’s A&E department.

Cllr Nightingale says the model has not been properly scrutinised as part of the consultation into the future of Weston General Hospital.

Last month, the Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), which is leading the Health Weston reforms, recommended A&E should not reopen at nights in the long term, with a medically-led service between 8am-10pm seven days a week its preferred option.

The CCG is holding a consultation on the proposed changes, which will run until May 24.

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Cllr Nightingale has organised the summit to enable members of the public to listen to the proposal and answer questions.

He said: “There is a real ongoing concern about the current overnight closure of Weston General Hospital’s Accident and Emergency Department.

“My further concern is that although we have a proposal crafted by hospital consultants on the table, it is worrying that this does not seem to form part of the future plans for our hospital.

“When hospital staff say they have found a safe and manageable solution to resolve the closure, the Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire Commissioning Group, who are considering the department’s future, need to carefully and fully consider this solution.

“There needs to be a constructive and open discussion by all parties and this can only be done by bringing everyone together - residents, consultants, doctors, nurses and the clinical commissioning croup as the decision makers.

“I feel it’s really important everyone should have an opportunity to have their say in the hospital’s future.

“We also need to have a wide range of views from clinicians across the country whose A&E departments are open 24/7.

“I have invited all of them to a health summit, with the aim of finding a solution to this worrying issue.”

Professor Parag Singhal, consultant endocrinologist, said: “A downgrading of Weston hospital will deprive the local community of the care they deserve and we should try to explore every possible solution.

“This health summit is being organised to discuss different models proposed by the Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire Commissioning Group and the consultant body and to seek views of clinicians and the public.”

The summit is taking place at Victoria Methodist Church hall, on Saturday, at 6pm.