Wolfson Hospital To Shut In March

Building declared unfit for purpose

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The Wolfson Hospital in Copse Hill, Wimbledon, is to close in March, after the building was declared "not fit for purpose".

The long-term plan is to relocate the majority of the services to Queen Mary's Hospital in Roehampton, with 10 beds provided at St George's Hospital, Tooting.

In the short-term, services will be moved to temporary homes at the other two hospitals. The empty building will then be sold, with the proceeds used to pay for the long-term building work.

The decision by St George's Healthcare Trust follows a consultation, with 167 formal responses, and an independent report.

Geoff Cloud, consultant physician and care group lead for neurorehabilitation, said: "Our proposals to redesign neurorehabilitation services will provide improved facilities for patients and maintain the ethos and strong team approach of the current service which is rightly regarded as being first class."

To read the independent report on the consultation and recommended next steps visit the consultation pages.

St George's Trust has also announced that it is unable to proceed with a potential merger with St Helier Hospital.

The trust's board submitted a formal merger bid in November 2011, but has now decided that the current terms of the merger present them from proceeding.

It issued the following statement: "The board is clear that a merger between St George's Healthcare and St Helier would be an excellent strategic opportunity, with the potential to bring significant improvements to the care of patients across southwest London and beyond.

"After careful consideration the board has reached the conclusion that the current terms of the merger prevent us from proceeding further at this time.

"The level of financial challenge facing hospitals in south west London, combined with the inability to pre-empt the outcome of a public consultation around the Better Services Better Value (BSBV) review, means this is not the right time for us to progress with the transaction.

"We want to continue to build on the existing links that are in place for clinical services. We have identified a number of the potential benefits to patients that would occur from an acquisition which could also be delivered if the organisations remained separate legal entities which we shall continue to pursue."

February 4, 2012