Letter of the week: Here's how to resolve Hartlepool health village battle

Hospice boss Tracy Woodall looking at the health village plans during a consultation event at Alice House earlier this year.
Hospice boss Tracy Woodall looking at the health village plans during a consultation event at Alice House earlier this year.

Further to the article (Mail, August 13) about Alice House and the Thirteen group wanting to build houses on the vacant land that once was Howbeck Hospital.

Hartlepool Borough Council wants the land to be used solely for health services.

I fail to see what the problem is as there is a very simple solution.

In fact, there is no problem if both sides agree to work together.

Alice House, in conjunction with Thirteen, wants to build 73 bungalows and 18 social care apartments.

A very commendable gesture looking after the more vulnerable people in society who need to be near to and have quick access to medical care.

On the other hand, the council wants only medical facilities on this land, thereby having all “out patient” medical facilities in one central location, which is another very good idea having all medical facilities centralised within Hartlepool (pity the council didn’t think about this before it approved the building of One Life in Park Road).

Now let’s put all of this into a bag, shake it up and see what comes out.

Hartlepool health services have a large problem with bed-blocking.

Previous Letter of the week: We put up with something we didn't want - other Hartlepool residents should do the same
Elderly people who are fit to leave hospital cannot do so because there is nowhere for them to go where care within the community can be provided by either social services or family.

As a result of these bed-blocking patients, people who are ill and need admission to hospital cannot be admitted because of the lack of beds.

The University Hospital of Hartlepool has become more like a care home instead of a medical facility treating the sick and injured.

Therefore, instead of 73 bungalows and 18 social care apartments which Alice House and Thirteen would like to build, how about 50 bungalows for special needs people, 18 apartments for social care people and a building with 23 rooms for the elderly who are fit to leave hospital, are bed-blocking but can move into these rooms until care is arranged elsewhere?

Result: Alice House, in conjunction with Thirteen, gets to build its houses for people with special needs, the National Health Service in Hartlepool gets to free up lots of beds to allow more hospital admissions, and the council gets to have the land used for NHS medical purposes, plus lots of council tax from the residents of the properties.

Edward Powell,

Birchill Gardens,

Hartlepool..