CAMPAIGNERS trying to save Teignmouth Hospital are poised to throw what could be the last roll of the dice.

The Save Teignmouth Hospital crusaders are gearing up to take their message again to Devon County Council next week where members of the health and adult care scrutiny committee will further debate the historic hospital’s future.

The committee has been investigating whether there would be sufficient evidence to refer the decision to close the hospital, the first purpose-built NHS hospital in the country, back to the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care on the grounds that there is a proven need in the community. 

Councillors have been warned the process is complex and has never been achieved before.

But there has been months of behind the scenes work by committee members to assess whether there is a case for such a referral. 

Save Teignmouth Hospital spokesman Geralyn Arthurs said: ‘This is the last roll of the dice. 

‘Once the hospital has gone, there is no way to resurrect it, but if we come together we maybe able to save it for ourselves and future.

‘With an increasing population common sense would state that we need more health service provision, not less. 

‘Teignmouth needs to retain its hospital as well as provide a Health and Wellbeing Centre for its residents.

‘Contrary to popular belief Teignmouth Hospital is operational providing excellent health services for local residents and also for patients across Torbay and South Devon. The wards may have closed but the theatre, physiotherapy department and several outpatient clinics are delivering excellent health care to patients.

‘Supporting the first purpose-built hospital for the NHS has been a long ongoing struggle.’

She said it was fortunate their campaign had received the backing of Teignmouth Town Council and Shaldon and Bishopsteignton Parish Councils over the years, and Teignbridge District Council voted unanimously to give its support earlier this year. 

Geralyn hopes there will be a ‘large’ turnout of supporters for the meeting on Thursday, November 9 at County Hall in Exeter.