THE fate of Crumhaugh House took a further twist this week when councillors revealed they have been assured it will not shut.
Rumours have been circulating for months that the Teviot Bank facility is earmarked for closure, but at a meeting of Hawick Community Council on Tuesday night it was heard that health bosses have promised it will stay open.
Councillor Davie Paterson stated: “I had a meeting with NHS Borders chief executive Callum Campbell and medical direcor Dr Ross Cameron, and they made it abundantly clear that there was a future for Crumhaugh House. And they said that patient care would not suffer.” And although Councillor Paterson admitted no assurances were given that beds would not be lost, he added: “I was happy with the meeting and have no reason to think they are telling lies.”
This was reiterated by fellow Councillor Stuart Marshall, who also spoke with Dr Cameron this week. “I was also told that the building wouldn’t close, but that NHS Borders are trying to find how best to utilise it going forward,” he stated.
However, community councillor David Nuttal questioned such information, stating: “I’m worried about what they’ve told you. It is my understanding that as of this week continuous care at Crumhaugh House no longer exists, and I hear the beds have already been reduced. And if the rumours are right, it is being set up so it could be closed within a week.”
Alasdair Pattinson, general manager for NHS Borders, says the Teviot In-Patient Redesign Project is not focused on individual buildings, but added: “Moving services from their current location, if it improves health care delivery, is one of a number of options that requires consideration. Several projects are under way which will help inform the future feasibility of the Crumhaugh site, but no decisions have yet been taken.
“It is envisaged that any potential future service redesign would retain a minimum of 23 community beds within Hawick, ensuring continued access to inpatient provision where this is required.”