A dental department doesn't feature in proposals for the new hospital because the plan is for it to "remain where it is", the Government has now said.
Last month, the Government released its design specifications for the island’s new hospital, which aims to bring all services which were previously spread across the General Hospital in Gloucester Street, Overdale and mental health facilities in St. Saviour in one place.
Analysis of the document by Express revealed that many services currently at the General Hospital and Overdale did not feature in the design brief for the new hospital.
Among the items omitted were replacements for Pain Management Centre, the Child Development and Therapy Centre, neurology and memory services, the Jersey Diabetes Centre and a dental department.
Pictured: Some of the services currently provided from Overdale Hospital are not mentioned in the design specification documents for the future hospital.
The latter, which is based opposite the General Hospital’s Gwyneth Huelin Wing at Newgate Street, offers community dental care for primary school children, orthodontic treatment for children and young adults in full-time education and oral surgery.
But its lack of inclusion in the ‘Functional Brief’ document led to concerns among members of pressure group ‘Friends of Our New Hospital’.
“If there is no Dental Department, does this mean that there will be no Dental Consultants in [‘Our Hospital’]? If so, is their role going to be outsourced off-island along with their patients?” they wrote in a bulletin.
Asked for clarity by Express on the future provision of dental services once the new hospital is built, a Government spokesperson said: “The dental department will remain where it is, and there are no plans to reduce the dental care available for children.”
They added: “As is the case now, any dental treatment requiring a general anaesthetic would be done at the new hospital’s children’s facility.”
Meanwhile, the Friends of Our New Hospital have decided to start a series of daily walks between St. Aubin and Les Quennevais - where Overdale services will be moved while the new hospital is built - to "increase public awareness of the relocation of medical facilities from Overdale to Les Quennevais scheduled for the end of December this year."
Pictured: Services currently in Overdale will be moved to the old Les Quennevais School while the new hospital is built.
"This is a major move that will shift many of Jersey's medical facilities from the centre of the island to the west. But details are almost unknown," they wrote in a post about the walks on Facebook.
"So far there has been little preparation in conjunction with the St. Brelade parish authorities, and residents in the Clos des Sables area have almost no idea of the plans that will change their way of life.
"The walks aim to break this silence, gather information regarding the site, the building, the surrounding community and the transport services available.
"We shall also question what health services are moving from Overdale to Les Quennevais and how long they will stay there? Is the move for a temporary period or will some of the health facilities remain there even when the new hospital at Overdale is open?"
The Deputy Chief Minister Senator Lyndon Farnham, who has political responsibility for the Our Hospital project, has previously pledged that the "vast majority" of current Overdale services will go into the new hospital.
The walks will start at 11:00 from St. Brelade's Parish Hall today, and will continue every day, including weekends, until 29 March.
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