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NHS changes at Ashford, Canterbury and Thanet hospitals as patients invited to join panel

Patients have just a few days to sign up to join a panel which will help decide the future of hospitals in east Kent.

Health chiefs are looking for 40 residents for the group to work with medical professionals to discuss the proposals, how they have been prepared and for views on the scheme before it is put out to public consultation later this year.

The NHS has come up with two options covering the types of treatment which will be on offer at the William Harvey Hospital in Ashford, Kent and Canterbury Hospital and the QEQM Hospital in Margate.

Ashford William Harvey Hospital.Picture: Paul Amos. (10845488)
Ashford William Harvey Hospital.Picture: Paul Amos. (10845488)

The workshop will take place in Canterbury on July 18 to iron out plans for the four east Kent areas - Thanet, Canterbury, Ashford and South Kent Coast (Folkestone and Dover).

The plans outlined form part of a major reshuffle of health services in east Kent with services being relocated and specialised in specific hospitals.

NHS bosses revealed their ideas for the new blueprint for hospitals last year - with emergency care at the William Harvey and QEQM at risk if a new 'super hospital' is built in Canterbury.

In a statement, the NHS said: "We have developed two potential options for future hospital services, which have been shaped by feedback from local people and NHS staff.

The Kent and Canterbury Hospital (6718954)
The Kent and Canterbury Hospital (6718954)

"We now need your help to scrutinise how we will evaluate these options before the local NHS decides which option/options will form part of an upcoming public consultation."

The deadline for applications is on Monday (June 24) with places confirmed on June 26.

The NHS says it is looking for patients and carers of all ages with experience using A&E, inpatient treatment at one or all of the three hospitals, long-term conditions and regular hospital visitors, maternity and childrens' services.

The QEQM hospital in Margate. Picture: Google (8000222)
The QEQM hospital in Margate. Picture: Google (8000222)

Applicants do not require previous involvement or knowledge of the proposals but must be willing to read or listen to information ahead of the day discussing the plans and new evidence.

For more information and to apply go to the NHS website.

To keep up-to-date with all the latest developments with your local hospitals and other health stories, click here.

Read more: All the latest news from Kent

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