Second Thanet stroke unit consultation event to take place in Margate

QEQM Photo Chris Constantine

A second Thanet consultation event to discuss proposals for hyper acute stroke units has been arranged by Kent and Medway health services.

Health chiefs want to create three hyper acute stroke units for Kent and Medway – meaning current services will be removed from some hospitals, including QEQM in Margate.

A shortlist of options for the specialist units lists only the William Harvey Hospital in Ashford for east Kent.

The NHS in Kent and Medway – which includes all 8 Clinical Commissioning Groups – Bexley in south east London and the High Weald area of East Sussex are now consulting on the proposals.

The shortlist, which is subject to further assessment and final approval, is:

  1. Darent Valley Hospital, Medway Maritime Hospital, William Harvey Hospital
  2. Darent Valley Hospital, Maidstone Hospital, William Harvey Hospital
  3. Maidstone Hospital, Medway Maritime Hospital, William Harvey Hospital
  4. Tunbridge Wells Hospital, Medway Maritime Hospital, William Harvey Hospital
  5. Darent Valley Hospital, Tunbridge Wells Hospital and William Harvey Hospital

The NHS says hyper acute stroke units will reduce deaths as each will have a multi-disciplinary team of specialist stroke clinicians, seven days a week caring for patients in the critical first 72 hours.

But Thanet campaigners say isle lives will be at risk because of journey times to Ashford.

The consultation on the proposed changes is open now and runs for 10 weeks until midnight on Friday 13 April .

To take part, people can read the consultation document, take part in public meetings and events, and complete an online or postal questionnaire. There will also be specific engagement through focus groups and other work with people whose views are less likely to be heard, and people whose age, ethnicity or other factors puts them at higher risk of a stroke.

A Thanet consultation meeting is scheduled for Minster village hall, in the High Street, on March 7 from 2pm to 4pm.

Concerns had been raised by residents and Margate county councillor Barry Lewis about the Minster event being inaccessible to some but health bosses say two events for each area were always planned and are being added to the consultation page regularly.

This will take place at Margate football ground, Hartsdown Road, Margate  on February 26 from 6.30pm to 8.30pm.

To register for either event click here

Read here: Kent and Medway 3 ‘hyper acute’ units plan will mean stroke services removed from Margate’s QEQM


  1. Any removal of essential services from our hospital in Thanet can only be a bad thing for the residents who live there. It is of no consequence to them that a new service will be provided in Ashford which is 37 miles away by road and at least an hours drive if the roads were clear which is unlikely given there is a city in between Thanet and Ashford, and on top of that there is the wait for an ambulance on top, if you can get one quick enough. There are too many factors against these proposals so they are just not acceptable to a population on the outer edges of the County. Strokes are on the increase in people of any age now and it makes sense to have those services in each hospital so that early/quick treatment can be implemented, giving a better outcome for all concerned. They should be consulting on improving our hospital services in an increaseing population in Thanet instead of taking them away. Where are our MP’s when they should be fighting tooth and nail to stop any erosion of services?

  2. Shorditch on Sea residents demand that QEQM be changed from its present third world standards and status into the leading hospital unit in Kent.
    Perhaps providing the proper professional staff and facilities required to service Thanet’s community the area can start to see economic growth and the higher standards needed for health care.
    Our towns are growing rapidly and government demands for thousands more houses together with the London Boroughs dumping their aging and immigrant communities on the town are all building pressures on medical facilities that are currently under resourced and out dated in approach.
    Because the NHS has adopted local authority management style we are stuck with far more management and admin staff than doctors and nurses.
    We need to cut out the obscene management costs and grossly inefficient buying practices and follow up with eliminating beauty cosmetic surgery for the vain would be glamour stars and the NHS might be able to cope with the medical needs it is there for.

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