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The letter below was sent to the Parish Clerk to encourage Kings Nympton residents to to reply to the Survey re the future services provided by Northern Devon Healthcare Trust at the North Devon Hospital, Barnstaple

URGENT! YOUR RESIDENTS NOW HAVE A SAY IN FUTURE HEALTHCARE PROVISION IN NORTH DEVON. PLEASE ENCOURAGE YOUR RESIDENTS TO CONTRIBUTE.

We would like to make you aware, if you are not already, that Northern Devon Healthcare Trust is currently undertaking an engagement process relating to the provision of acute and other services at North Devon District Hospital. We consider this engagement to be extremely important for the people of North Devon and Torridge and would like to briefly explain the background.

In June 2017, the first stage of a Devon-wide Acute Services Review produced recommendations from clinicians that North Devon District Hospital should continue to provide the following: 24/7 urgent and emergency care services (including A&E), acute stroke services, consultant-led maternity services, neonatal & paediatric services. However, these are only recommendations, as the official public briefing explained:

“This clinical work has always been the first stage in the review. As part of the second stage, the recommendations will be tested in more detail to ensure they can be delivered with safe, cost-effective and reliable staffing solutions for the future. Only once this assurance work is complete, can the recommendations be finalised. This is an important step, as the recommendations do not, at this time, immediately solve all the problems that drove the need to review these services.”

The second stage of the review is in progress and Northern Devon Healthcare Trust has identified the following services as vulnerable: care of the elderly, stroke, oncology, maternity, radiology, trauma & orthopaedics, acute medicine and paediatrics. Please refer to the stakeholder briefing which you may have already received from the Trust or which can be found here:

https://www.northdevonhealth.nhs.uk/hospital-services/

Save Our Hospital Services is concerned that, if the recommendations cannot be finalised, services may be lost from North Devon District Hospital and patients may have to travel to Exeter or further afield for treatment. We believe it is vital that all members of the public in North Devon and Torridge should have the opportunity to make their voices heard in the public engagement process. We would therefore ask you to consider:

1) participating in the engagement process in your capacity as a stakeholder, i.e. as a council representing your local community; and

2) publicising and encouraging the residents of your town, village or parish to complete an online survey commissioned by Northern Devon Healthcare Trust in which patients, or their family or close friends, can share their experiences of the services that are considered to be vulnerable. The survey can be found here:

https://www.surveygizmo.eu/s3/90159013/NDHT-feedback-2019

Please do not hesitate to get back to us if you have any questions. In the meantime, thank you very much for your support.

Best wishes,

Save Our Hospital Services Devon