Plans to make Hartismere Hospital more of a health-hub for North Suffolk and South Norfolk came one step closer following a meeting of local health bosses on Friday 23 January 2015, called by Dr Dan. Dr Dan, who continues to work as an NHS doctor in an unpaid capacity alongside his role as an MP and Government Health minister, was delighted that the meeting confirmed Norfolk CCG's commitment to allow Hartismere to be used by patients from the Diss area from 2016, which will provide a big funding boost to the much loved community hospital.
Following an ongoing campaign from Dr Dan, it was also confirmed that Hartismere Hospital has recently expanded the services it offers for children with autism, and that there are also new additional physiotherapy services being run from the site.
Dr Dan Poulter has long campaigned to increase NHS services offered at Hartismere Hospital and played a key role in keeping the hospital open and gaining £1.5 million for a refurbishment of Hartismere in 2012.
The hospital currently offers services including podiatry, continence, mental health, diagnostics, and rehabilitation and the new commitment of funding from Norfolk will help to expand these. There are also plans to offer NHS beds for rehabilitation and respite care at Hartismere as part of a new care home development.
Nick Hulme, the Chief Executive of Ipswich Hospital was also present and confirmed that Ipswich is also investigating how Hartismere could potentially provide additional close to home care and more outpatient services for patients in rural areas, and Cllr Alan Murray confirmed that Suffolk County Council would examine the opportunities to better use Hartismere as a health and care hub.
Commenting on the positive outcome of the meeting, Dr Dan Poulter said:
"Having played a key role in helping to gain £1.5 million for the refurbishment of Hartismere, I have long campaigned for a strong future for the hospital. Following this meeting, we can now look forward to more funding coming into Hartismere from Norfolk CCG, and I am pleased that Ipswich hospital are supporting opportunities to better integrate care for people in rural areas, particularly the frail elderly. I am also grateful that Suffolk County Council also recognise the potential that Hartismere has to better integrate health and social care for the benefit of local families."
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