Amputees in Ipswich facing trips to Eye or Norwich if limb fitting clinic closes at hospital

Ipswich Hospital

Ipswich Hospital - Credit: Archant

A clinic which supports amputees at Ipswich Hospital is facing closure, with patients facing trips to Eye or Norwich for the service.

The limb fitting clinic, run by Norfolk Community Health and Care (NCHC), operates once a week at Ipswich Hospital in Heath Road. During an appointment, a patient may be seen by a medical consultant, physiotherapist or prosthetist for a review of their prosthetic limb.

NCHC is considering moving the service to Hartismere Hospital, Eye.

Diane Hewitt, 58, who has visited the clinic regularly for around 20 years, said: “What about the old people who haven’t got transport?

“I’m disgusted with it. There’s a lot of amputees in Ipswich. There’s soldiers, there’s young people. They are taking it away from us.”

A spokeswoman for NCHC said the closure was only being considered at this time.

“The clinic, which is based in Norwich, has operated a satellite service at Ipswich Hospital for several years,” she said. “Even though this is a small satellite clinic it still requires considerable space in which to operate; a consulting room, casting room, and a gym which has a high degree of privacy. Hartismere Hospital has excellent facilities and adequate disabled parking.

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“All new referrals attend an initial appointment in Norwich. Patients are able to choose which location would best suit them for appointments going forward.

“We understand that the proposed move may cause some inconvenience, but the service patients receive would be enhanced. For those who meet the criteria, hospital transport is available. Every person who attended a clinic at Ipswich Hospital within the last two years was sent a letter detailing the proposed move, and was asked for their feedback.”

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