The details of the stroke consultation has now been published, and it is without doubt a very thorough, full and intensive document. I think it is realised that the response was varied without any real clear indication or overhaul agreement of what and where is best for the stroke units. Indeed I am surprised that the option of Darenth Valley, and Maidstone along with the WHH may show as the slight favourite, given the amount of stroke patients see by Medway Maritime Hospital.
The biggest concerns on travel times are those from the residents of Thanet and quite rightly so. CHEK is still adamant that the stroke unit should be at the K&C in a new acute hospital, and not built at the WHH until the acute consultation has been completed, which we believe will conclude that acute services should be located at the K&C.
However as we have said before we need the acute consultation to begin urgently and remove the uncertainty we have had for the last sixteen years.
WHY THE DELAY
We are told that the delay is because they need to get local care right first, but nobody will explain why? Local care will develop as time goes by and may take sometime to get it right.
What I think we would all agree is that an acute hospital is just that! Acute care for the needs of the patients that cannot be given in the community, and therefore the design of acute hospitals and the services they offer should be relatively straight forward.
So please get involved and follow CHEK and help us achieve what is best for the patients of east Kent as quickly as possible.