A HUGE part of Northwood history will die if a hospital ward is moved to the south of the borough, the chairman of a residents group has warned.
Plans to relocate the Northwood and Pinner Community Unit from Mount Vernon Hospital in Rickmansworth Road, Northwood, to the Woodland Centre, on the site of Hillingdon Hospital in Pield Heath Road, Uxbridge, have been hailed as an improvement by NHS bosses.
However, some people believe it will be an inconvenience for visitors currently living near the 22-bed ward and that it is a sign of more facilities being removed from the north of the borough.
Tony Ellis, chairman of Northwood Residents Association, said: “After reading the proposals, it is very difficult to argue against the move.
"The current premises are not fit-for-purpose and the suggested new premises will be a huge improvement - as long as they are not watered down.
“However, as 60 per cent of admissions are from the north of the borough, it will be very inconvenient for visitors.
“Once again, facilities are being taken from the north of the borough. This facility has been available in Northwood for nearly 90 years and a huge part of our history will die if the unit is moved.”
Trevor Begg, chairman of watchdog group Hillingdon LINk, said: “If you read the report it does appear that we will get a much better facility.
“In terms of visiting people, if you live in the north of the borough then you have got further to go.”
The ward traditionally housed patients from Northwood and Pinner Community Hospital in Pinner Road, Northwood, after it closed in 2008, but now about 40 per cent of admissions are people from the south of the borough.
It offers nursing and rehabilitation services to those with acute health needs, often elderly patients, but also offers respite care although the number of patients needing this has fallen from 40 in 2008/9 to just six in 2011/12.
A spokesman for Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust, which runs the ward, says its new setting will offer superior and “fit-for-purpose facilities” including single and double rooms and a large garden.
Hillingdon Council’s external services scrutiny committee will discuss the proposals at its meeting at Hillingdon Civic Centre tomorrow (Thursday) and a consultation will be launched if the trust decides to go ahead.
n What do you think?Let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org