STRUCTURE: Responses to a consultation over the planned reconfiguration of ophthalmology and orthopaedic services are currently being analysed, with results expected next month.

The consultation was jointly carried out by Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Trust, NHS West Sussex, and the Coastal West Sussex GP Federation.

Specifically, the plans – called Service Redesign for Quality in West Sussex – Our proposals for better care – propose to move the specialist ophthalmology department from Worthing Hospital to Southlands Hospital, and to move inpatient elderly and orthopaedic care from Southlands to Worthing.

The trust said the changes would make patients safer by ensuring all major operations take place close to critical care facilities, and would cut down the number of times patients are transferred between sites.

The reconfiguration, which would take place over a period of up to two years, will be accompanied by improvements to community-based NHS care in the area.

The 12-week consultation on the plans received 503 formal responses. The trust said all of the feedback generated was currently being analysed by an independent company, which would submit a summary report.

The trust said: “Recommendations regarding the way ahead, produced in the light of the feedback received, will be drawn up in June and will then be considered by the Boards of Western Sussex Hospitals Trust, NHS West Sussex, and the Coastal West Sussex GP Federation.”

The West Sussex Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee will also consider the recommendations, it said.