Consultation starts on hospital changes

THE CONSULTATION into controversial changes to the way key hospital services are provided in Eastbourne is underway – and Gazette readers are being asked to have their say.

East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust wants to centralise stroke care, emergency orthopaedics and emergency general surgery at either the DGH or its sister site in Hastings.

The move has been criticised by health campaign group Save the DGH but management at the trust claim it is as much about improving the quality of care than saving money.

Public consultation began on Monday and will run until September, with locals asked to say where they think the departments are most needed.

Dr Andy Slater, a medical director at the trust, said, “We want every operation to go ahead on time as planned.

“We want every patient needing emergency diagnosis and treatment to be seen and treated swiftly by skilled and expert doctors.

“We want everybody who has had treatment to get the right support afterwards to enable a strong recovery in good time.

“These goals are not currently achievable and we want to change that.”

“Staff at both Eastbourne DGH and Conquest Hospital work incredibly hard to provide excellent care.

“This is about improving our services so we can do even better.”

The consultation period will run for 14 weeks, until midnight on Friday, September 28, and will involve a series of public events – the times and venues of which are yet to be confirmed.

Copies of the consultation and planned changes are available online at or readers can get a paper copy by calling 01273 485300.