Bid to protect East Devon’s community hospitals from ‘excessive rents’

East Devon MP Hugo Swire says he has received confirmation from health ministers that both Ottery St Mary Hospital and Budleigh Salterton Health and Wellbeing Hub will play an ‘integral part’ in the district’s future healthcare provision – along with hospitals in Exmouth and Sidmouth. However, he continues to fight to protect community hospitals from excessive rents.

Experts claim some hospitals could close if rents go up at the next review.

Writing in his monthly bulletin, the MP points to high rents charged by the state-owned NHS property Services.

“The National Audit Office has suggested hospitals nationally may be at risk of closure were rents on their estate to rise at the next set of reviews in 2021,” he states.

“NHS trusts, however, can now bid for the ownership of their estate if they can demonstrate the benefits of taking over the buildings in question.

“We should be delivering services closer to the community – and make the case that our hospitals must remain open to manage an ageing population and provide the best quality care close to home.”

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