Decision delayed on services at Friarage Hospital

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A decision on the future of maternity and children’s services at the Friarage Hospital will take a few weeks longer it has been announced.

NHS Hambleton, Richmondshire and Whitby Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has said it will be taking a further few weeks to review the clinical information and public feedback received, before it recommends the options to take following public consultation.

The CCG had hoped to present the options at its Shadow Governing Body meeting on Thursday, August 23.

However, a spokesman said, in order to ensure every piece of information has been assessed fully and every avenue explored, it is now going to hold an additional meeting in public at a later date, to discuss the options in more detail.

The options are still expected to be taken to the Board of NHS North Yorkshire and York (the Primary Care Trust currently responsible for commissioning services) for approval on September 25, as originally planned.

If major change is approved, a formal public consultation period will begin. This consultation would give members of the public a chance to have their say on the proposed options and which one they are most in favour of.

Dr Vicky Pleydell, Shadow Accountable Officer at NHS Hambleton, Richmondshire and Whitby CCG said: “Over the summer we have been analysing the vast amount of clinical information, national guidance and feedback received from patients and the public.

“We had hoped to have this analysis complete for our meeting on August 23. However, we have decided to take some extra time to make sure we have explored every possibility.”

“This will take an additional period of time and we thank everyone who has been involved in the engagement process so far for their patience.”

This formal consultation is likely to be concluded in January, with a final decision being made by the Board of NHS North Yorkshire and York in spring next year.