Chatsworth ward given a stay of execution following campaign to save it, claims union

Stock pic GP Doctors NHS
Stock pic GP Doctors NHS

A trade union says a ward set to close at Mansfield Community hospital has been given a stay of execution after a campaign to save it.

According to the UNITE trade union the November date for the closure of the Chatsworth Ward has been cancelled until the outcome of further talks is clear.

On Saturday more than 100 campaigners marched through Mansfield in their bid to save the Chatsworth Ward at Mansfield Community Hospital from closure, carryin g the banner #We Are All Chatsworth.

Secretary of UNITE Nottinghamshire NHS branch Jon Dale, said: “#We Are All Chatsworth is confident it is having a big impact on Sherwood Forest Hospitals Trust board and the Clinical Commissioning Group.

“After a meeting last week, the Trust has recognised the need for a continuing neuro-rehabilitation service in this area.

“It is still under discussion as to whether that service will be provided by Sherwood Forest Hospitals Trust or another provider.”

He said the campaign has been told there will be no changes until these discussions and plans have been made clear and discussed with them.

And the original November closure date is cancelled.

Jon Dale added: “This is another significant step forward for the campaign to save Chatsworth ward and the vital service it provides,”

The demonstration showed great support for the brave and determined stand Chatsworth staff have made.

“This support is growing all the time as the message gets across that if Chatsworth closed today, there will be somewhere else in the firing line tomorrow. We’ve had enough of cuts and privatisation and are fighting to save our NHS.”

On Saturday Nurses, health workers, trade unionists and activists joined the march from the Community Hospital on Stockwell Gate to Butter Cross Square in the town centre.

Secretary of UNITE Nottinghamshire NHS branch Jon Dale, said: “The immediate threat is to the service that this unit provides to the people of Mansfield and Ashfield .

“It is to lose specialist care ad other services the ward is providing for hundreds of patients with conditions like MS, Parkinsons and brain injuries.

“But Chatsworth is just one ward.

“We are fighting against cuts to the whole NHS. That is what this protest is about.

“Enough is enough we are not going to accept any more privatisation.

“It is a fantastic demonstration but is just the start of the campaign . It is going to grow . This will really bring home the message home to local people that there is a fight on . We want to save our NHS.”

Chatsworth ward will be closing from November this year. The ward currently provides neuro rehabilitation care, helping people who have suffered injuries to their nervous system to recover.

Richard Mitchell, chief executive at Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which runs the Stockwell Gate hospital said previously the closure was due to problems recruiting specialist staff and reduced need for the service.

As marchers assembled outside Mansfield Community Hospital on Saturday many passing drivers hooted in support.

When the demonstration to save Chatsworth Ward reached the town centre, shoppers clapped and cheered.

More than 100 nurses, therapists, patients and former patients, along with family members and supporters demonstrated were led by the new #We Are All Chatsworth campaign banner. Banners and flags from Unison, Unite and Royal College of Nursing, Mansfield Socialist Party and Green Party followed.

Nurses and a former patient spoke at the enthusiastic rally in Butter Cross Square. A message of support was also delivered from the campaign fighting to save Glenfield Childrens’ Heart Surgery unit in Leicester.

More to follow when we have it