Missing: Loughborough Hospital's A&E

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Fundamentally, Loughborough hospital should have an A&E section. It’s absurd that people should travel some thirteen miles in order to receive emergency care at the Leicester Royal Infirmary. In a town full of students, many of whom cannot drive, it makes seeking treatment difficult.

Loughborough services are limited only to specialised day care, including physiotherapy, minor operations and sexual health.

Loughborough has had a university for over forty years, with an increasing student population. It’s highly puzzling as to why nothing has been done until now, not to mention Loughborough’s sporting reputation and party culture highlighting the necessity for services close by. There are other towns across the UK that have an A&E section, so why hasn’t Loughorough?

Supposedly, access to the hospital is made available to those who cannot drive through the use of ambulance services. However, this is also limited with the consistent appeals to the public not to call an ambulance unless completely necessary, due to shortages. A correlation with the shortage of ambulances can be seen in the shortages of staff and the controversy currently surrounding health care.

The shortages in service also puts pressure on the actual A&E department at the Leicester Royal Infirmary. Not only do they have to adhere to the needs of the population in Leicester, but they need to accommodate people from Loughborough as well. It is unavoidable that the services would be affected by this.

In recent news, however, it seems there is progress being made towards meeting the healthcare needs of people locally. Loughborough is said to be receiving its own ‘Urgent Care Centre’ this April, with hopes of ‘delivering improved quality care and an increased range of services in a local setting’.

Extra building work is being done at the hospital, adding 183 parking spaces to meet demands. But it seems uncertain as to what the services will actually entail, as it disregards ‘acute A&E services’. We are told that access to other services including x-rays, blood tests and observation bays will likewise be available, at the expense of relocating current departments, such as orthotics and dietetics, to refurbished departments.

Ultimately, it is looking more positive for Loughborough’s health care, it is hoped that the changes ‘will be something the people of Loughborough can be proud of’. Information for these changes can be found on the website http://www.westleicestershireccg.nhs.uk/.

What are your opinions on the matter of a lack of an A&E service in Loughborough? Comment below, find us on Twitter @labelonline or find us on our brand new Facebook page.

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