The Joint committee of PCTs have made their final decision about Childrens Heart Surgery and Isle of Wight NHS Trust is absolutely delighted with the news that this will include the continuation of surgery at Southampton.
The decision follows the comprehensive Safe and Sustainable clinically-led review of services. In March 2011 the NHS reviewed how it delivers congenital heart services to children in England and Wales with the aim to attain better outcomes for patients. Islanders were urged to respond to a national consultation which turned out to be one of the largest in NHS history. There were various options for where the centre of excellence would be located but only one option included University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust. In 2009/10 around 20 Island Children needed these services.
Almost a quarter of a million people signed a petition opposing the closure of City’s Ocean Ward at Southampton General. The closure of the ward would have meant patients from the Isle of Wight and their families would have had to travel even longer than the maximum three hours to a specialist unit which the review recommended.
Acting Chief Executive Karen Baker said: “This is brilliant news for Islanders. The needs of children have been at the heart of this review and I want to say a huge thank you to all those Islanders who took time to take part in the consultation and sign the petition which helped to secure the service at Southampton, ensuring that our patients not only have the benefit of this outstanding facility which is one of the best in the Country, but can also be easily reached within very short travelling times”.
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