Patients told: unit will close

PUBLISHED: 06:20 18 January 2007 | UPDATED: 21:31 29 May 2010

NEWS that a purpose-built unit for elderly people with dementia is to close has left people in Dunmow facing longer journeys to get treatment. Staff at The Kitwood Unit at the Herts and Essex Community Hospital in Bishop s Stortford have been told funding

NEWS that a purpose-built unit for elderly people with dementia is to close has left people in Dunmow facing longer journeys to get treatment.

Staff at The Kitwood Unit at the Herts and Essex Community Hospital in Bishop's Stortford have been told funding for the unit will be withdrawn in June.

The NHS Trust, which funds the unit, which was set up only four years ago for elderly people with mental health problems, said the shake-up would lead to more efficient services.

Patients will be forced to travel to Harlow's Princess Alexandra Hospital, St Margaret's Hospital in Epping or Chelmsford's Broomfield Hospital.

Tony Middleton, manager of Uttlesford's Alzheimer's Society, said: "We're very sad about the closure as it is a very good unit.

"We've been given assurances there will be services and care provided elsewhere but we have not been told where this will be.

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