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Eye hospital group faces competition

PUBLISHED: 09:27 04 April 2008 | UPDATED: 10:27 12 July 2010

Residents who set up a non-for profit company to develop health care facilities at the Hartismere Hospital site in Eye have learned they will face competition from prospective purchasers across Europe.

Residents who set up a non-for profit company to develop health care facilities at the Hartismere Hospital site in Eye have learned they will face competition from prospective purchasers across Europe.

Suffolk Primary Care Trust has now been advised by the Strategic Health Authority that it must extend the bidding process

for the premises to potential interested parties on a Europe-wide basis.

And David Ecclestone, chairman of Hartismere Health and Care CIC (Community Interest Company) which hopes to buy the hospital, said: “This will have the regrettable effect of further delaying firm planning for the site and so extending uncertainties, which have for so long confused local people.

“Hartismere Health and Care CIC continue to work quietly but steadfastly to maintain adequate healthcare provision for local people. We are excited by our vision for this important facility and are confident that the community value of Hartismere will be fully exploited if the bid is successful.

“We hope that the unique nature of this widely supported bid will be fully valued by the PCT and will be pressing for the selection criteria to be transparent and to be announced ahead of the bidding.”

The site is likely to on the market in April and it is expected that Suffolk Primary Care Trust will award the tender at the end of September.

Residents had campaigned against the closure of the hospital which is a base for the Gilchrist maternity unit but currently has no hospital beds.

It is anticipated that a range of diagnostic services and clinics will be provided at the site in the future, and the PCT has also indicated that there may be 10 intermediate care beds as well.

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