Services lost bit by bit

A few weeks ago Dr James Mitchell, a former GP and much-loved and respected family doctor, gave his opinion as to the best plan for Berwick's new hospital, (Berwick Advertiser, August 9).

Sunday, 30th September 2018, 09:00 am
Updated Wednesday, 26th September 2018, 10:36 am

Given that Berwick Infirmary has three refurbished and then closed wards, and also is central to Berwick, with less expense (or use all the money being offered), his could be the best idea yet.

We are told that the new hospital will have 16 beds.

Well that, in my opinion, is a slap in the face for the people of Berwick and all the outlying villages and farms around Berwick on both sides of the Border.

If this community was taken into account as it should be, the population count in the hospital plans would double.

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Now we see in ‘A Better Hospital for Berwick’ that children under 12 have to travel to Wansbeck for blood to be taken. My 20-month-old great-grandson had blood taken at Eyemouth Day Hospital and there was never a whimper.

The Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, along with Northumberland County Council, appears to be chipping away bit by bit at the services to which the people of Berwick and surrounding area have access to.

Will all these services be returned in the new hospital, or will we be told that all the money has been spent on consultants and there is no need for a hospital in Berwick as the two doctors’ surgeries will be turned into clinics to cater for the few services left?

I believe this is already happening.

Northumbria Healthcare NHS Trust and the Scottish Borders NHS Trust, and both county councils, no longer appear to have a system in place to accept patients from either side of the border without long discussions with each other.

If both sides got off their high horses and spoke to each other, the population of Berwick and district would have a hospital that works for the district.

Harriet French