Staff shortage forces hospital bed cuts at Cornwall cottage site
Bed space at a cottage hospital in Cornwall is to be halved from the beginning of November because of a shortage of staff.
Peninsula Health Community took over the running of the county's 14 community hospitals last October. The not-for-profit company confirmed that ten of the 20 beds at Launceston Hospital would close, but stressed it was only on a "temporary" basis.
It said staffing levels had been affected by promotions, maternity leave and retirement. Staff who were redeployed to Launceston would be transferring back to Stratton Hospital, at Bude, for its reopening on November 1.
"Peninsula Health Community is actively recruiting for hospital staff for both Launceston and Stratton hospitals. A number of beds will be temporarily closed at Launceston while we recruit.
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"Patient care and safety is paramount and we will ensure that all ward areas are staffed safely and in accordance with best practice.
"Recruitment to these posts is part of a wider recruitment exercise to clinical posts for a range of services for which Peninsula Health Community has responsibility.
"Peninsula Health Community is currently developing an acute care at home service in East Cornwall and this combined with the roll-out of the early intervention service will mean many more patients will be able to be supported safely at home, reducing the need for hospital admissions."