Coventry & Warwickshire

St Cross hospital closes Birch Ward to save money

A ward at a Warwickshire hospital is being closed to save money.

The decision to close the 22-bed Birch Ward at St Cross Hospital in Rugby will save the University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust £1m a year.

Councillor Claire Watson from Conservative-run Rugby Borough Council described the move as "worrying".

Carl Holland from the hospital said: "The hospital has actually got 1,200 beds, it's a drop in the ocean and nobody's losing their jobs."

Ms Watson said: "It is worrying, we need that capacity at St Cross - it's going to have a knock-on effect for people coming from Coventry to recuperate.

"It's a facility that's needed in this town and also the whole of the region."

Mr Holland said patients from the ward will be placed in other beds and staff will be allocated to other parts of the hospital.

The ward will close at the end of the month as part of the trust's plans to save £8.5m before April 2012.

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