The future of Little Cairnie Hospital appears to hang in the balance while NHS Tayside carries out a “review of services”.
Rumours have been circulating in the town concerning the closure of Little Cairnie and the matter was brought to the attention of the Arbroath Herald by Jacquelane Cargill, president of the League of Friends of Little Cairnie Hospital and Arbroath Infirmary.
She said: “It’s not talk. The staff have already been told and they have known for at least a month. It came as a really big bolt from the blue.
“It’s a very great blow to the town. It’s a very high level of care for the elderly and it’s an amazingly couthie level of care for all the people there.
“We don’t have a date yet for the closure, it could be quite imminent or it could be five months from now, there’s been no further information passed to me.”
Mrs Cargill is now keen to ensure that years of fund-raising for equipment by the League of Friends will not be in vain.
She said: “I’m seeking assurances from the Primary Care Trust that all the equipment will not be mothballed and it will be transferred to Arbroath Infirmary.
“There’s very ground-breaking work being done in the care of the elderly at Arbroath Infirmary, so much so that it may be a role model for the rest of the country.
“It took a lot of effort to raise the money for that equipment and we do it gladly, so we don’t want it to be mothballed.”
She continued: “Economics are economics and we appreciate that it’s got to be economically viable and that these things do happen.”
An NHS Tayside spokesperson said: “We are currently in the middle of carrying out a review of all the services that are provided at Little Cairnie as part of an ongoing review of all NHS sites in South Angus.
“We have been working closely with local patients, public partners and staff looking at options to identify improvement steps so that we can continue to deliver an increased range of services locally to the people of South Angus.
“For the last six years there has been a major improvement programme called the Community Medicine and Rehabilitation redesign programme ongoing in Angus.
“We will continue to engage with the local communities in South Angus to identify improvement options and welcome comments.”
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