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Sent: Thursday, 23 February 2023 at 17:01:32 GMT

Subject: ICB Board to consider next steps in enhancing urgent care at Weston General Hospital


Dear colleague,

The next step in a series of exciting plans, designed to improve urgent care services at Weston General Hospital, will be considered at Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire’s ICB Board meeting next week (2 March).

Complementing the routine, ongoing service developments, the plans focus on the further enhancing delivery of safe, high-quality and sustainable urgent care services at Weston General Hospital. The planned changes would mean more people are able to receive high-quality treatment and care faster, with shorter stays in hospital supported by increasingly integrated working across hospital and community-based health and social care teams.

The plans include:

  • A same day emergency care (SDEC) service, which would allow people to be rapidly assessed, diagnosed, and treated, without being admitted to a ward or trolleyed area, seven days a week, 8am – 10pm, supported with increased access to rapid diagnostic radiology tests.
  • Enhancements to the Acute Monitoring Unit (AMU) and Emergency Department Observation Unit for adults, providing faster assessment, treatment and discharge.
  • Enhancements to the existing Geriatric Emergency Medicine (GEMS) service, which is already an award-winning clinical speciality at Weston General Hospital that provides emergency treatment for people who live with frailty.
  • Implementing an Older People’s Assessment Unit (OPAU) – a short stay ward for older people with 14 beds for stays of up to 72 hours, with experts in care of older people providing rapid assessment, diagnosis, and treatment.
  • Improving and increasing surgical efficiencies in existing Weston General Hospital theatres that begin to improve access to some surgeries for local people.

The hospital will continue to provide A&E services from 8am to 10pm, exactly the same as for the last six years.

If approved, the new services would begin to be put in place from 1 April 2023.

The plans have been designed by local clinicians and informed by engagement with more than 5,000 local people, with the most recent period of public engagement taking place between June and August 2022, providing feedback from 890 people.

This engagement aimed to gather the views of local people and organisations to help refine our implementation plans and inform how we let people know about the changes.

During this public engagement period, 73% of respondents indicated that they thought the plans would improve the hospital, with respondents also supporting the aim to help more people go home quickly after going to hospital in an emergency.

A full report of feedback heard from the Summer 2022 engagement exercise, including themes, can be found at

You can read more about the plans being considered on 2 March in the full ICB board paper on the ICB website.

We will continue to engage and test our plans with patients, the public, and our staff as we progress them ready for implementation.

If you are part of a community group and would like to hear more about the programme, please contact or call 01179002633.

Your sincerely,

The Healthy Weston Programme


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