Southwold and Halesworth hospitals recommended to close by health chiefs following public consultation

The League of Friends at Patrick Stead Hospital in Halesworth holding their annual fete.Picture: Jam

The League of Friends at Patrick Stead Hospital in Halesworth holding their annual fete.Picture: James Bass - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2015

Two hospitals are recommended for closure, bosses at HealthEast have announced.

Great Yarmouth and Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group (HealthEast) today put forward its recommendation to its governing body to close Southwold and Patrick Stead hospitals permanently.

HealthEast plans to replace the beds lost by the closures by developing out-of-hospital services and providing beds in care homes.

It follows a public consultation held over the summer, and HealthEast's governing body will be asked to have a final say on the issue in a meeting on Thursday.

If the recommendation is approved at Thursday's meeting, Patrick Stead could close in 2018.

Southwold Hospital is already effectively closed due to staff shortages.

At the meeting on Thursday, governors will also have the final say on Beccles and Old Hallows hospitals in Ditchingham.

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The CCG said it anticipates there would not be a need for the five GP community hospital beds at All Hallows, and recommends working with local clinicians to develop out of hospital services supported by beds with care in the Bungay area.

It also recommends a change of use for the GP community hospital beds in Beccles Hospital for patients with longer-term needs.

A total of 15 beds at Northgate Hospital, Great Yarmouth, are also recommended for closure.