The minor injuries service provided from Dartmouth Community Hospital will be temporarily suspended from 29 May 2015. Patients are instead being asked instead to use the Minor Injuries Units at Brixham Community Hospital (8am-6pm, Monday to Friday, 4 miles away via ferry) or Totnes Hospital (8am-9pm 7-days a week, 14 miles away). Where appropriate, Dartmouth Medical Practice will also be able to provide non-emergency treatment.
All other services provided by Dartmouth Community Hospital are continuing as normal.
Dr Adam Morris, Medical Director at Torbay and Southern Devon Health and Care Trust, which runs the minor injuries services, explains the reason behind this measure:
“Nationally there is a shortage of nurses entering or returning to the profession and nurses trained in minor injuries are in high demand. This is having an impact on our ability to recruit to rural locations as many nurses need to be treating much bigger numbers if they are to keep up their skills and develop their careers. Dartmouth Community Hospital has been particularly affected due to a number of our long-service nurses retiring and the unsuccessful recruitment to fill these posts.”
I understand that for some people this is not an ideal situation but our duty is to ensure that the service can be provided safely. We are continuing our efforts to recruit permanent staff to run the services in Dartmouth with the aim of resuming full services as soon as possible.”
The Trust will provide a progress report on the minor injury unit at Dartmouth Community Hospital in September 2015 or sooner if recruitment is successful.