MP Wants St Mary’s Hospital Transferred To Council
The St Mary’s Hospital building could be transferred to Council ownership.
Scilly’s MP Derek Thomas says he wants the NHS Property division to hand over the asset to the Town Hall so that a combined health and social care facility, including an improved end-of-life unit, can be developed.
Derek says there’s been a move towards closer integration of social and health services at the site, but he feels that NHS Property hasn’t been “willing to engage” in this.
Mr Thomas says he’s discussed the idea with the Council and Greg Clark, the Secretary of State for the Department for Communities and Local Government.
Derek says the Minister feels this fits in with the government’s agenda to make better use of assets and transfer ownership closer to the people using them, part of the Cities and Devolution Bill, which is currently passing through Parliament.
Derek says money would probably be needed to upgrade the building for its new uses, but believes Scilly is good at attracting funding for these types of projects.
And the plan could allow alternative uses for the existing care home Park House, which Derek says could be used for housing, although he says that decision needs to be taken by the Council.
Earlier this week, a consortium of NHS providers was announced as the preferred bidder to take on the running of the hospital when Peninsula Community Health end their contract in April.
Derek says NHS Kernow will still be responsible for commissioning services at the hospital and the Council would provide the space for them to operate.
He says he can’t estimate how long this process could take but believes the end result will be worth it.
A spokesperson for NHS Kernow contacted Radio Scilly this morning to say that St Mary’s Hospital is “very much part” of their plans as they look to join up health and social care on the Isles of Scilly.
They added: “We will continue to closely involve the local community – including patients and local stakeholders – as we develop plans.”
NHS Property Services, which owns the freehold to St Mary’s Hospital, said they are actively supporting NHS and local authority partners in developing plans for this site.
They said: “The next steps in the process will depend on the outcome of work currently being undertaken by social and health care commissioners to determine what local services are needed.”