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Fight on to save Suffolk hospital

PUBLISHED: 23:09 17 June 2005 | UPDATED: 05:56 02 March 2010

DON'T even think about it.

That was the message from campaigners today as they stepped up their fight to stop health chiefs closing Felixstowe General Hospital.

DON'T even think about it.

That was the message from campaigners today as they stepped up their fight to stop health chiefs closing Felixstowe General Hospital.

MP John Gummer has called a public meeting to officially launch the campaign and said people would fight all the way to keep the vital facility.

The meeting will take place tomorrow from 3pm to 5pm at the Elizabeth Orwell Hotel, Hamilton Road, Felixstowe, to put together an action plan.

Mr Gummer has branded the suggestion the hospital be closed and its site sold off for housing to recoup some of the Primary Care Trusts' £18 million debts as "utterly unacceptable".

He said: "What I want to say to the health authority is 'Don't you begin to go down there, don't you think for one moment we will put up with that'.

"The purpose of having the public meeting is to begin the battle because I don't want this health authority to think it can do this without a very, very major battle."

Jenny Brabazon, chairman of the Patient and Public Involvement Forum for Suffolk Coastal, said: "It is a betrayal of patients, the public and staff after two years of public consultation and assurances from two PCT chief executives that this decision (to look at relocating services) has been taken.

"This makes a mockery of the government's goal of ensuring patients and public are properly involved in decision-making and also of its stated aims of moving services closer to people's homes."

PCTs' spokeswoman Jan Rowsell stressed no decisions had been made concerning Felixstowe General Hospital. An options paper on the future of services would go to the Suffolk Coastal PCT board on June 29.


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