Questions need to be asked about chief executive’s statement on DHS future

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The correspondence from the chief executive of East Sussex NHS Health Trust (February 8) in reply to a letter from Ms Mitchell (January 10) beggers belief.

He states that the closing of the Coronary Care Unit at the DGH ‘has never been contemplated and is not part of East Sussex NHS Trust’s plans’.

He is playing with words of course and has never ruled out closing differing sections of the Cardiology and Maternity departments. He then wonders where such an idea came from, before going on to unnecessarily pour scorn on the ‘Save the DGH’ campaign.

Being ‘economical with the truth’ seems to also come with a very selective memory, which perhaps requires refreshing.

Since the CE was appointed in July 2010 there have been numerous reports in the local press of the proposed closure of differing sections of the Cardiology and Maternity depts.

This constant ‘drip drip drip’ of information, or perhaps non-information, by the Health Trust has of course had the intended negative effect on the local population, and in the mind of many people means closure of these departments is just around the corner.

This was made quite clear with the headline of November 11 2011 when the CE told the Herald that the local population ‘have to get used to the idea of sharing services with Hastings’, and that the ‘DGH and its sister hospital The Conquest will have to adapt to pooling their resources’.

In the October 28 2011 issue of the Herald there was an article and photograph on the opening of a new Path Lab within the Cardiology dept.In the same issue was an article on proposed cuts to the Cardiology dept.

In the January 13 2012 issue of the Herald there was an article on a meeting between the CE and Lewes MP Norman Baker. After the meeting Mr Baker told the Herald that he thought ‘there was a real prospect’ of the DGH losing Cardiology and Maternity services.

The CE replied to this statement from Mr Baker via the Herald on January 20 2012.

In his statement he yet again failed to deny Mr Baker’s concerns for both departments.

Since his appointment the CE seems to have spent his time ‘testing the water’ of public opinion by putting out differing public statements and proposals on the reduction in services at the DGH.

I would suggest that if anybody has ‘misled the public’ it is he.

CHRIS DOREY, Westfield Road.