Fowey Hospital update

We have been asked by the Mayor of Fowey Cllr. Ruth Finlay if we could provide any information about Fowey Hospital.

We spoke to Cornwall Partnership Foundation Trust and they provided the following update:

Cornwall Partnership Foundation Trust took over responsibility for the services provided at Fowey Hospital on 1 April 2016. It’s bed capacity was reduced from 10 beds to 6 due to a buildings conditions survey which highlighted limitations on the safe service the hospital was able to offer. Between May and August there was a total of 24 admissions of which four patients were Fowey residents.  In mid-July, a Cornwall Council food hygiene and safety inspection required urgent works to be undertaken by the landlord NHS Property Services leading to the temporary closure of the hospital.  Since this temporary closure Fowey residents have been admitted to St Austell hospital eight miles away.  

The minor injuries unit has not been operating since 2015 following concerns raised by the Matron.  Attendance rates had been very low making it difficult to maintain staff skills and competency and with no X-ray facilities on site there was limited diagnostic and treatment interventions available.  Local residents have since accessed minor injury provision at St Austell hospital.  This decision was reinforced and supported by the Care Quality Commission following their own inspection in the same year.  

Following the remedial works undertaken on flooring and removal of asbestos as a result of the Cornwall Council food and hygiene inspection,  the Infection Prevention Control team with the Matron reviewed the hospital last month and they have identified a programme of further works that need to be undertaken to prevent the spread of infection between patients, visitors and staff to control and contain potentially pathogenic organisms.  

The Trust is working closely with NHS Kernow, NHS England and NHS Property Services and is committed to providing patients with high quality care in premises and facilities that are safe and fit for purpose for both patients and staff. 

Since the Trust has taken over delivery of community health services a review of the whole community hospital estate in the county has been on-going as a result of building condition surveys.  While highlighting issues to do with premises, this county wide review is helping inform clinicians about how local people currently use and in the future can best access the most appropriate and effective community health care they need – close to home.  There has been no decision made to permanently close any community hospitals in the county, including at Fowey.

If you are concerned about your community hospitals, or have ideas about how services can be continued or provided differently it is vital you take part in the county’s Sustainability and Transformation Plan (STP) discussions.

Visit our STP page to view public feedback events in January and how to take part online or by other means.