Brave New Dawn to Wiltshire Health Care
The units run by Wiltshire Primary Care Trust, include those at Devizes, Marlborough, Melksham, Warminster and Eastleigh Surgery in Westbury.
Minor injury units will now be provided at Trowbridge Hospital, which will open 24 hours a day, and at Chippenham Hospital, where the hours are being cut to 7am-1am seven days a week. Other units are available in surrounding counties.
The decision was taken by Wiltshire Primary Care Trust.
Like many other Trusts, it is struggling to reduce debts - it went £20m into the red.
But managers insist that they have patients' best interests at heart.
"The rationale," a spokesman said, "is not about saving money, but about modernising services to provide care which is fit for the 21st Century, and which allows more people to be treated outside of hospital settings."
Health Minister, the Bristol South MP, Dawn Primarolo. "Wherever possible we have to take services closer to patients in the community," she says, "but we won't always be able to do that.
"The total quality of care that is available is much better," she says.
Having local Minor Injury Units has probably saved the lives of two of children, if they had had to be driven that extra twenty miles before initial treatment I think there is every likelyhood they would have died. So this morning I wake up and Wiltshire has one, just one, 24 hour unit. And that is at Trowbridge Hospital which is due for closure in 2009.
Do you know how big Wiltshire is? How long it takes to get from one side to the other? The local response teams aren't working yet. So you lying sacks of shit don't tell me it is all about Patient Care, you have fucked up an already fucked up system, quite an achievement that! Quite simply people will die, but as they will be DOA the new super system won't record them as hospital deaths. In a just world Dawn Primarolo would be lying in the middle of Salisbury Plain with a sucking chest wound between her wrinkled dugs trying to gasp out how being thirty miles from help made the "total quality of care much better."