Another hospital department has moved out of Eastbourne this week – to the disgust of DGH campaigners.
Emergency and high risk orthopaedic services – which deals with, for example, broken legs and hips – moved to Hastings’s Conquest Hospital on Tuesday (May 13).
Save the DGH chairman Liz Walke said, “This is exactly what we have been saying about the domino effect – we have seen emergency and high risk general surgery and consultant-led maternity and paediatrics go and now this.
“These are services which anybody may need in an emergency so to travel further when in life-threatening situations is surely not safer for the person who is needing the treatment.
“They may not even survive the journey!”
Eastbourne MP Stephen Lloyd added, “I am really saddened that this week emergency orthopaedics has formally moved from our local hospital to the Conquest.
“The tremendous strength and depth of our orthopaedic surgeons and nursing staff which has been built up at the DGH over many years, will, I fear, begin to be crucially undermined. I cannot believe that this move serves Eastbourne well.”
The move will mean a small number of more complex planned orthopaedic operations will now take place at the Conquest rather than the DGH – those patients affected will be notified individually, said a DGH spokesperson.
Dr Andy Slater, medical director (Strategy), said, “As doctors working in East Sussex we are committed to improving the healthcare available for our communities.
“We firmly believe the changes to emergency and high risk orthopaedics will improve the quality of care we are able to provide to patients now and in the future in East Sussex.
“By having all emergency and high risk orthopaedics based on one site, we now have more surgeons available to carry out planned procedures and an on-call surgeon to deal with any patients needing emergency care. .”