A new petition has been launched in a bid to save Burnham-On-Sea Hospital’s minor injury unit from possible closure.
The Friends of Burnham Hospital has started the petition, called ‘Keep urgent and minor injury treatment in Burnham-On-Sea’, which is online here.
Burnham-On-Sea.com reported that the NHS’s seven MIUs across Somerset, including one at Burnham-On-Sea War Memorial Hospital in Love Lane, could be closed down and replaced with a smaller number of ‘urgent treatment centres’ (UTCs) across Somerset.
While no decisions have yet been taken, the government is seeking to introduce urgent treatment centres across the UK which will be larger hubs run and staffed by GPs, with longer opening hours and a wider range of services.
The Burnham petition states: “The NHS is exploring the future of all the Minor Injuries Units throughout Somerset and the establishment of other, fewer, ‘Urgent Treatment Centres’ (UTC). If Burnham Hospital is not selected as a new UTC it would mean the closure of our MIU and the necessity for long journeys to obtain this type of service, affecting all Burnham-On-Sea residents and visitors, further reducing medical facilities locally.”
“Burnham-On-Sea has a large proportion of elderly residents who would be greatly impacted by having to travel long distances to obtain minor injury treatment, currently available at the M.I.U. in the Town. Journeys to Bridgwater Community Hospital or Western Hospital A&E would involve hours of travelling using a wholly inadequate public transport system.”
“During the summer months Burnham-On-Sea attracts thousands of visitors, many with young children. It has been estimated that 20,000 additional visitors a week come to the area and the local MIU then has a big influx of patients, removing this facility would leave a void locally.”
“The Friends of Burnham Hospital has raised and spent more than £2 million on improving and maintaining facilities at The Burnham-On-Sea War Memorial Hospital, raised through local donations – help us keep medical facilities in the Town.”
“We, the undersigned, are concerned citizens, who urge our politicians and NHS to act now to retain our MIU or to establish a UTC, at Burnham-On-Sea.”