The row over the future of the DGH’s Day Surgery Unit rumbles on as the hospital is accused of denying the closure with a ‘play on words’.
Countless calls, emails and letters to the Herald have said that the unit will be closing down and some staff moved to the Hastings’ Conquest.
The well-respected Friends of the DGH group has also raised concerns, telling the paper last week that the fundraisers had frozen funds for the Day Surgery Unit.
And this week the Herald received another anonymous email stating, “The Day Surgery Unit will close on Monday 4th August and the technical staff within the Operating Theatres will be re deployed to the Conquest Hospital.
“The Unit will cease to exist and Day Surgery cases will be put through the main Operating Theatres.
“This is because the present management has moved so much Operating Theatre capacity to Hastings the are redundant Theatres at Eastbourne.
“The statement that Day Surgery operating will continue at Eastbourne is a play on words, it will but no longer be in the purpose built Unit as the staff will be dispersed and the Unit decommissioned.
“The patients will then will have to take ‘pot’ luck for any space left on the General Wards. The Units Booked Admissions Office has already been moved to the Hastings site.”
However, the hospital has continued to strenuously deny the closure, saying day surgery will continue elsewhere at the hospital – and the unit itself will be used for community dental surgery.
In response to the contents of the email, which was shown – anonymously – to the hospital, Richard Sunley, chief operating officer, said, “As has been said before, day surgery will continue at Eastbourne DGH.
“It is simply being relocated to the main theatre complex within the hospital to enable us to make further improvements in both the quality and efficiency of the day surgery service we provide patients.
“Day surgery makes up a major proportion of all our surgical activity within the Trust. It is important we ensure it is run as efficiently as possible to meet patient’s needs.”
The hospital also reiterated that ‘no staff’ will lose their jobs as a result of relocating day surgery within the DGH.
And denied that patients will have to take ‘pot luck’ as most patients return home after their surgery on the same day and do not require admission to a general ward.