Royal Bournemouth Hospital's new stroke unit opens

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A £2.2m Dorset stroke unit has opened at Royal Bournemouth Hospital following a merger of services with Christchurch Hospital.

The rehabilitation centre at Christchurch has moved to form a combined service with Bournemouth's acute stroke unit.

Bournemouth has cut its stroke beds by 20, from 56 to 36.

Stroke consultant Professor Jo Kwan said: "A combined unit maximises the potential for patients to recover."

The hospital said the building of the stroke unit remained within the £2.2m budget set for the project.

A spokesman said no staff were made redundant as a result of moving the services to the new unit.

In Bournemouth 700 people a year have strokes, according to the hospital.

The borough has the highest proportion of over-85-year-olds in the country.

In March, the Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals NHS Trust was considering plans to move most services from Christchurch to Bournemouth as part of £30m cost-cutting plans.

Bournemouth Hospital's stroke unit is taking part in a six-month pilot project to release patients three weeks early under a new home care scheme. More staff have been recruited to run the project.

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