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Closing date: 15-09-2020

NHS East Sussex Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) would like to thank everyone who took part in the public consultation about the future of Eastbourne Station Health Centre.

All the responses from both phases will now be carefully analysed by Opinion Research Services Ltd (ORS), the social research organisation employed by the CCG to manage the consultation feedback and to faithfully report the outcomes. ORS will then produce a comprehensive, independent report of the findings for the CCG to consider before any decisions are made. This will be published on our website.

Following the official end of the consultation, we are continuing to listen to local people and hear the questions that are being raised so we can make the best possible decision about the future of health services in Eastbourne.

A number of questions have been raised about the capacity of the GP practices in and around the town. In response to these questions, we have put together some information about the Eastbourne town practices, including the numbers of people on their registered lists and the staff they employ. We hope you will find this useful.

NHS East Sussex CCG will take its final proposals to the following public (virtual) meetings:

Please keep an eye on this website for further updates.

What are we doing?

Earlier this year, after careful consideration, and the approval of its governing body, NHS East Sussex Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) consulted on a proposal to close the walk-in service at Eastbourne Station Health Centre. This consultation is now closed.

You can read about the consultation and the CCG’s review of services provided at Eastbourne Station Health Centre and the town in our consultation document.

Why are we doing this?

We want to make sure that local people have access to the right services for them. Walk-in centres were originally set up to provide same-day urgent care services for minor illnesses, minor infections, minor cuts and sprains. However, local services have improved recently and people now have access to:

  • Improved access GP appointments – local GPs are working together to offer patients more appointments. This means you can now see a GP, practice nurse or another health professional at a time that is more convenient for you, in the evenings, weekends and on bank holidays. The improved access service offers an average of 1,900 appointments a month in the EHS CCG area – over and above those offered as part of ‘normal’ GP hours – so local people now have access to more GP appointments. To find out more just ask at your local GP surgery.
  • NHS 111 – available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, NHS 111 has fully trained call handlers including health care experts who can review people’s symptoms right there and then. Soon the health care experts that take the calls will be able to access your healthcare records and be able to book you an appointment with an appropriate health professional should you need to see someone.
  • We now have Urgent Treatment Centres at the Eastbourne District General Hospital and at the Conquest Hospital in Hastings. Our Urgent Treatment Centres are open for at least 12 hours a day, every day of the week (including bank holidays). They offer a walk-in service, and from September 2020 people can be booked into the Urgent Treatment Centres by NHS 111. The purpose of Urgent Treatment Centres is to diagnose and treat those people attending A&E who have a minor injury or illness, such as sprains and strains, suspected broken limbs, ear and throat infections, and feverish illness in adults and children that really need to be seen on the same day.

The walk-in service at Eastbourne Station Health Centre

We looked at why people were using the walk-in service at Eastbourne Station Health Centre. We looked at four different days in 2018, including weekdays, weekends and Bank Holidays. We found that the vast majority of patients needed a prescription (a total of 65%) followed by 21% of patients who received advice on how they could treat the issue themselves. The remaining 14% consisted of referrals to a pharmacy, their own GP, or another service, with a small number receiving treatment on site.

This showed that people are using the walk-in service for non-urgent primary care health issues that could be dealt with by other services nearby in the town centre, for example:

  • Other GP surgeries in the town centre, who offer appointments in the evenings, at weekends and on bank holidays for locally registered patients.
  • Community pharmacies.
  • Other services including those for people with mental health issues, drug and alcohol services and services for homeless people.

Also, between June-August 2019, we engaged with local people to gather their experiences of, and feedback on, the walk-in services at Eastbourne Station Health Centre and the other healthcare services they might use. We also conducted a survey, online and face-to-face, which took place from 16-31 August 2019.

The NHS is committed to providing the best value for taxpayers’ money and one way to do this is to avoid duplicating services already available in the local area. For this reason we consulted on a proposal to close Eastbourne Station Health Centre.

If, following consultation, a decision is taken to close the Eastbourne Station Health Centre, we would use existing funding from the walk-in service to invest in other local health services to support the community.

Have a question about the consultation?

Our frequently asked questions have more information about the consultation.

Consultation documentation

For more information below is a library of the documents relating to the consultation: