Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Launceston Hospital - still no date for full re-opening

There is still no date being set for the re-opening of all the closed beds at Launceston hospital. That was one of the messages from the Chief Executive of Peninsula Community Health, Kevin Baber, when he spoke to councillors this morning.

As many as ten of the twenty beds in the hospital have been closed for some time and Mr Baber told councillors towards the end of the last year that his organisation was hoping to get some of them re-opened by the end of January. And the report he produced for the committee today indicated that they would have five of the ten reopened by January 21st. Except he indicated that there had been a slight hold up and this target might not be met.

But the intention is still there and I believe that PCH are working towards re-opening the beds.

But when I asked about the remaining five beds, Mr Baber was unable to indicate when these will be back in use. He said that he would continue to try to recruit staff and would re-open the beds as soon as it was safe to do so. I believe that is the case but I'm disappointed that there is no date in the mind of PCH for achieving this aim.

As things stand, Launceston Hospital has 95% bed usage. That's high and well above the average. It goes to show that there is a strong demand for these beds and I hope that PCH will do everything they can to make sure that all the beds at Launceston Hospital are re-opened as soon as possible and, crucially, that they remain so in future.

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