Dispute over name of new health trust

THE chairman of a health trust has agreed to reconsider its proposed new name after complaints it would not reflect its locality.Richard Bourne, chairman of Essex Rivers Healthcare NHS Trust, said that plans to rebrand it as Colchester Hospitals University NHS Trust were not set in stone.

By Roddy Ashworth

THE chairman of a health trust has agreed to reconsider its proposed new name after complaints it would not reflect its locality.

Richard Bourne, chairman of Essex Rivers Healthcare NHS Trust, said that plans to rebrand it as Colchester Hospitals University NHS Trust were not set in stone.

His comments came after members of Tendring District Council's community leadership and partnership committee said the new name ignored their area, which is covered by the trust.


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They also feared the name could indicate an intention for the trust to centralise more services in Colchester and away from where they are currently provided in Tendring

Committee deputy chairman Ian Beckett said last night: “The name just centres on Colchester, and doesn't acknowledge Tendring, even though there are services here.

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“It was decided that, as a community, we were against having that as a name.

“People feel disenfranchised. The accident and emergency department at Clacton used to be full-time, but now it is open only during the daytime.

“A lot of health services have moved over to Colchester, and if they changed the name to that it would be as if everything had gone.

“In an ideal world we would have our own full-time hospital here, but everyone knows that won't happen. But this name makes it sound like there's nothing here at all.”

Mr Bourne said that a new name would be adopted if the trust's bid for foundation hospital status was successful.

“I feel reasonably relaxed about it. The university bit is the main thing.

“You could say we ought to have Braintree and Halstead in the name as well - the fact is that Colchester is where the main hospital is.

“One of the problems we have had is when people are looking for jobs, the current name doesn't really say where the trust is, whereas the new name would.

“However, it is a worthy point to consult on, and we will take it into consideration. We do not have a closed mind on it.”

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