Decision due on the Alex but final verdict could still take months

By Ian Dipple Friday 22 February 2013 Updated: 22/02 10:05

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Buy photos » Save the Alex campaigners hand over the petition to Eamonn Kelly, chief executive of NHS Worcestershire. Picture by Marcus Mingins 3912021MMR.

THE RESULT of a 13 month review into the reconfiguration of hospital services in Worcestershire is expected to be announced next week - but it will still be months before the future of the Alexandra Hospital is clear.

The Joint Services Review meets on Tuesday (February 26) and is expected to announce two options will be put forward for further consideration.

They include allowing Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust to continue to run services at the Alex and an option to look in more detail at bringing in Birmingham Trusts to takeover the Woodrow Drive site.

Although more detail will be available about the Worcestershire option, as it was the Trust which originally approached commissioners asking for the review, both options will need further work before formal consultation later this year.

But whichever is eventually taken forward both will involve changes to A&E, maternity and children's services as issues with a lack of middle grade doctors and the need for WAHT to save £50million by 2015 remain.

Because of the impending Worcestershire County Council elections a second round of engagement with the public cannot begin until mid-May with three months of formal consultation after that with a final decision expected in November.

As a result of the delay the Save the Alex campaign group is hosting a special meeting at the Palace Theatre on Monday, March 11 at 7pm.

Members of Redditch and Bromsgrove Clinical Commissioning Group - which will be involved in the final decision - will be there to answer questions, outline the options in as much detail as will be available at the time and explain their ambitions for the hospital.

To book a free ticket call the Palace Theatre box office on 01527 65203.

The borough council's Dial-A-Ride service will be running on the night for those elderly and vulnerable people unable to get to the meeting on their own.

For more information call Jen Macartney on 01527 534191.

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