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Mayor - Hospital Campaign has seen Successes, but Fight is on if Downgrade Proposed this Week

September 22, 2014 10:54 PM
Originally published by Dave Hodgson - Mayor of Bedford Borough

Bedford Hospital

With the 'Your Health in Bedfordshire' report on the future of Bedford Hospital due to be published this week, Mayor Dave Hodgson has declared that the the campaign for the future of Bedford Hospital must go on and fight for key services if a downgrade is proposed, as expected.

The campaign has achieved a series of successes, with NHS Commissioners declaring that proposals such as the closure of all beds at Bedford Hospital along with the paediatric and maternity units have been scrapped, despite having previously scored them highest in the evaluation of their short-listed options. However, the latest papers from the Bedfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group indicate that a severe downgrade is still very much in prospect for the Bedford Hospital, and Mayor Dave has called for the campaign's momentum to be maintained.

Commenting, he said: "The good news that the Commissioners are dropping their proposal for Bedford Hospital to have no beds whatsoever shows that the campaign to save Bedford Hospital as we know it is working. The Commissioners themselves state that a 'lack of stakeholder support' which could make the plans 'undeliverable' is a reason for this change. In English, this means that they have been made to realise that we will not accept such savage plans for our hospital, and it shows the importance of keeping up the pressure to save vital services.'

"The campaign is getting through, but with two of the remaining three options representing a severe downgrade, we will be watching this week's publication of the report with interest. If, as seems likely, this downgrade is pursued, it will be essential that we maintain the momentum and fight for the future of key services at Bedford Hospital."