The consultation proposals
Consultation ran from 15 October 2012-31 January 2013. It is now closed.
The changes suggested in the consultation, approved by the NHS Berkshire Board on 26 March 2013, will result in some services moving from Heatherwood Hospital, Ascot. They are:
- Moving the Minor Injuries Unit at Heatherwood to the planned new Urgent Care Centre at Brants Bridge in Bracknell. As a result patients would be able to take advantage of a wider range of care and treatment because more expertise would be available on the site.
- Improving rehabilitation services for both stroke and general medical patients, providing care and therapy to them in their own homes or communities, in line with best practice and national clinical guidance. People make a better recovery in their own homes than in hospital wards. Ward 8 at Heatherwood would close and a smaller number of rehabilitation beds would be provided at Wexham Park for stroke patients too unwell to return home.
- Permanently closing the Ascot Birth Centre at Heatherwood – The birth centre is a midwife-led maternity unit which was temporarily closed for safety and staffing reasons last year. Pregnant women would continue to have a wide range of choices of how and where to give birth including midwife-led delivery at local hospitals or at home where safe and appropriate.
Some further changes are planned which will impact on the level of services at Heatherwood. In particular:
- We will offer more local outpatient services in Bracknell, Maidenhead, Slough and Windsor, so patients can see a specialist closer to home.
- The small number of mental health services still at Heatherwood will move to locations that better match where the service users are. We have already consulted the public on plans to move mental health hospital beds to Prospect Park Hospital in Reading.
We will continue to work with local people as these developments take shape.