Hereford & Worcester

Alexandra Hospital: Birmingham trusts' takeover plan

Talks are under way about a possible takeover of some services at the Alexandra Hospital in Redditch.

Commissioners who will be responsible for the hospital from April said they have talked to three Birmingham trusts.

Redditch and Bromsgrove Clinical Commissioning Group (RBCCG) said they are determined the Alexandra will remain "a thriving local hospital".

Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust denied it is planning to "severely downgrade the Alex".

The trust said changes to services at the Alexandra was one of six potential options for clinical services across the county that have been put forward by a joint services review .

Campaigners fear the cuts to services at the hospital could include the closure of the accident and emergency department.

'Very positive'

The RBCCG will become responsible for many of the functions of the NHS in Worcestershire on 1 April.

It confirmed it has been talking to the University Hospitals NHS Trust, Birmingham Children's Hospital NHS Trust and the Birmingham Women's NHS Trust.

Dr Jonathan Wells, chair of the RBCCG, said: "We are determined that the Alex remains a thriving local hospital providing a wide range of services for local people."

He said these would include both routine and emergency care, as well as services for women and children.

The discussions with the Birmingham based NHS trusts have been "very positive" and the commissioning group was "optimistic about the future", he said.

Neal Stote, chair of Save the Alex campaign, said: "I think it's good news - potential new providers coming from one of the leading teaching hospitals in the country, looking to provide services at the Alexandra Hospital."

University Hospitals NHS Trust confirmed it has had "some discussions" with the commissioners about potentially "playing a future role in the provision of healthcare services in the area".

Penny Venables, chief executive of the Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, said it has not put forward any proposals to "severely downgrade the Alex" or to "centralise all services into Worcester".

"The Alexandra is an integral part of Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust and there are no plans for it to be transferred to another organisation," she said.

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