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MP Charlie Elphicke urges people to attend public meeting to secure future of Deal Hospital

An MP has appealed to the people of Deal to attend a public meeting today to show support to secure the future of the town's hospital.

It comes as part of a bid to safeguard health services as fears grow for the future of the London Road hospital.

Conservative MP Charlie Elphicke said: "People are so passionate about the future of the hospital and want to safeguard its services. It's time to let health chiefs know how much we care about Deal Hospital."

Originally planned to take place at the Town Hall, the meeting will now be at St George’s Church, High Street - which can hold more people.

Mr Elphicke made the location change after being overwhelmed with the response from his Deal Hospital survey, delivered to about 12,000 homes.

It invited people to the public meeting and asked for views on the services the hospital should provide.

He was prompted to organise the questionnaire after his visit to Deal Hospital's fete this month when he talked to people about their fears for the site's future.

Daniel Sansum
Daniel Sansum

The worries became public after a leaked email stated "the downside of the new Dover hospital would be the effect on Deal Hospital".

Mr Elphicke added: "Many people who answered the questionnaire were not interested in politics, but in safeguarding their community services.

“We must have had about 2,000 surveys returned. I have never known anything quite this and we are still processing the results. I must thank all my helpers and volunteers, especially Adrian Friend."

The entrance to Deal Hospital
The entrance to Deal Hospital

Deal Mayor Cllr Marlene Burnham said: "I hope the people of Deal and district will rally round and attend the meeting, to give their opinions and get the message across that we must keep Deal Hospital."

Dr Darren Cocker, clinical chairman of NHS South Kent Coast Clinical Commission Group, will attend the meeting, which starts at 7pm.

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