Herald comment: a red letter day for Eastbourne and the DGH

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Today (Friday) is a red letter day for the DGH and health services across East Sussex.

By the time many of you read this the powers that be will have decided whether or not to green tick controversial plans to centralise three key services at either the DGH or its sister site in Hastings.

The odds are that NHS Sussex will approve the plans put forward by hospital management and that East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust will be one step closer to concentrating emergency general surgery and emergency orthopaedics at the Conquest and specialist stroke care in Eastbourne.

Health campaigners are convinced such a move would put lives at risk. The Trust says the opposite, arguing it would actually improve the standard of care available.

The Herald has long supported the Save the DGH campaign and will continue to do so.

It is for that reason we are urging people to head to the town hall tonight at 6pm to find out what the next step in fighting these plans is.

If approved today there will be just one more chance to stop the changes. That comes when a scrutiny committee meets in December. It can refer the decision to the health minister but must be convinced of public opposition.

Now is the time to join the fight. Your town needs you.