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Shipley Hospital verdict is agreed by councillors
Bradford councillors last night voted unanimously to support the permanent closure of in-patient facilities at Shipley Hospital.
In-patient beds at the community hospital have been temporarily closed on safety grounds since 2010.
Now members of Bradford Council’s health overview and scrutiny committee have agree that the condition and layout of Shipley Hospital makes it no longer viable as a base for in-patient services.
Outpatients services at the hospital will continue to run as normal.
The decision follows visits to the hospital in Kirkgate, Shipley, by members of the committee to experience the problems associated with the building for themselves. Visits were made by chairman of the committee, Councillor Mike Gibbons, as well as deputy chairman Councillor Rebecca Poulsen, Councillor Vanda Greenwood and co-opted non-voting members of the committee Mike Young and Julie Lintern.
Coun Greenwood (Lab, Windhill and Wrose) said she had been accompanied on her visit by Councillor Martin Love (Green, Shipley) and both had come to the same conclusion, that the building was no longer fit for purpose and should close.
Coun Gibbons said he could not see how, without large sums of money being spent on it, the building could be made fit for purpose.
“It cannot be worthwhile,” he said. “The money could be better spent elsewhere.
“I have spoken to a number of people about this issue and not one single person has said it is possible to sort it out satisfactorily.”
Ali Jan Haider, of NHS Airedale, Bradford and Leeds, attended the meeting in City Hall to present a report which detailed the problems with the Victorian building and why it was not fit to be a venue to look after in-patients.
These include narrow corridors, with many twists and turns preventing safe evacuation in the event of a fire, an unsafe external fire exit and internal stair cases which do not meet minimum width requirements.
The age of building means it would cost up to £500,000 to bring the first floor in-patient unit up to standard for modern health care.
Coun Poulsen (Con, Worth Valley) added: “You can read a report but it is only seeing something first hand that it really sinks in.
“The dignity of patients could not been maintained and for us walking round the layout was confusing, let alone for elderly people.”