Public views on temporary bed closures - 14 December 2017

Date: 15 December 2017


14 December 2017 



Somerset Partnership NHS Foundation Trust is seeking comments as it looks to review its decision to temporarily close wards in three of its community hospitals and move the beds and staff to other local hospitals. These views will be taken into consideration as part of the Trust’s formal review at a Board meeting in February 2018.

The beds were moved from Chard and Shepton Mallet community hospitals as a matter of patient safety because of significant shortages in nursing staff. Dene Barton Community Hospital beds were moved in September to support the re-opening of specialist stroke beds in Williton.

The Trust has been working hard to recruit more nurses and at the February meeting, the Trust Board will consider whether Somerset Partnership can re-open the wards – this is the preferred option. If there are still not enough nurses in place to safely open all the wards and move staff back, the Board will need to consider whether to continue with some or all of the current temporary ward closures or whether to take different actions to ensure we can run our wards safely. Public comments will help inform these discussions.

The consultation runs until 22 January 2018.

To download the full consultation document and to find more information see our website at


For more information contact:

Victoria Eld
Head of Communications
Somerset Partnership NHS Foundation Trust
Tel: 01278 432 036 / Mob: 07887 947 423

Twitter: @SomParNHS 

Note for Editors: 

  1. Somerset Partnership NHS Foundation Trust provides a wide range of community health, mental health and learning disability services in Somerset. It also provides a number of regional specialist services to patients from across the wider southwest.

  2. Somerset Partnership’s services include inpatient care for general and mental illness, minor injury units, a wide range of specialist services in both community health and mental health services, and specialist healthcare for adults with learning disabilities. Many of these are delivered from 13 community hospitals and our four principal mental health sites across the county but, as well as seeing people in Trust premises, staff are able to offer appointments in other community venues which may be more easily accessible to patients. Wherever possible the Trust seeks to support people in their own home or as close to their home as possible.
  3. Somerset Partnership’s services are provided in partnership with other statutory agencies and a range of voluntary sector providers. The Trust employs more than 4000 members of staff, and has a turnover of £169 million.