It was a great pleasure to return to Dartmouth Hospital to see the newly refurbished Minor injuries Unit and to discuss the future of Community Hospitals with Tracey Cunningham, matron of Dartmouth Hospital.
The hospital was built in 1894 on the South Embankment and continues to provide a fantastic service for local residents, who would otherwise face a long journey to Torbay.
It is impossible to overstate how much patients benefit from the personalised care and link to their home communities provided by Community Hospitals. I would like to see an expansion in the outpatient services available at Dartmouth. At present ENT is available and the previously threatened paediatric clinic has been reinstated.
Why not expand these and bring more expertise out into the community? The future for community hospitals is to extend the services they offer. In addition to x-ray two days per week why not include ultrasound and other diagnostics like endoscopy?
It was also interesting to see some of the innovative measures staff take to look at how standards can be continually examined and improved at Dartmouth.
I challenge any hospital in the country to provide a better or more therapeutic view from its dayroom.