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The agreed notes from our meeting with senior RDE representatives on 5 November

Notes of the meeting held on 5 November at Seaton Hospital


Em Wilkinson- Brice (Deputy Chief Executive & Chief Nurse RDE Trust)

Adel Jones (Integration Director RDE Trust)

Maggie Gordon (Asst Director, Health & Social Care)

Jack Rowland (Chair – Seaton Area Health Matters, Seaton Town Councillor)

Geoff Pook (Vice-Chair SAHM, East Devon District Councillor for Beer & Branscombe)

Dr Mark Welland  (GP, Chair of Seaton Hospital League of Friends, SAHM Steering Group)

Martin Shaw (Devon County Councillor for Seaton & Colyford, Seaton Town Councillor, SAHM Steering Group)

Introductions and background

After introductions were given, Jack provided an update regarding SAHM, the community meetings that had been held, our structure and the availability of our new website

Subjects discussed

RDE Service Review report for Seaton

The service review report had been produced by the RDE Trust and had been circulated to members of the SAHM steering group prior to their last meeting on 1 November. This had given the members the opportunity to read the report and formulate questions and comments before this meeting.

The main points that were raised were:

  • Public transport difficulties from Seaton and the surrounding area to access services at the RDE Hospital. The actual picture is not the same as portrayed in the report and actual examples were given to illustrate the difficulties in outward and return journeys.
  • The statistics show that life expectancy in Seaton is lower than other areas of East Devon and this coupled with the demographics of the area and the projections on acute illnesses should be reflected in the report to demonstrate the need for services closer to where people live.
  • SAHM is very keen to see preventative clinics and education initiatives as part of a local health hub as this will have a long term benefit in helping to reduce the number of admissions to an acute hospital.
  • Dr Welland gave examples of statutory services that are lacking locally e.g. early stage dementia diagnosis in terms of brain scans, follow up and psychologist appointments.
  • The Budleigh Salterton Health Hub was mentioned as an example where GP’s in that locality could refer relevant patients to the facilities available there.
  • That we would like to see our area as a centre for helping with issues related to frailty in view of the current and projected age profile.
  • We want to work with other community groups e.g. taking an Axe Valley approach.
  • Issues with the DRSS booking service

Response from Em Wilkinson-Brice

  • The outpatient service at RDE is outdated.
  • They are reviewing the use of technology that has a role to play, together with patient activated outpatient referral. [w1] The NHS cannot provide all the services in all the communities, but need to see how adjacent geographies/communities may be considered together if a critical mass of need means that services can be provided locally.
  • RDE Trust are looking at what can be done to help stave off frailty.
  • DRSS processes had been raised at another Community Conversation and Adel was looking into this issue with a view to making sure existing and any future local clinics are fully utilised.

Estates Strategy

NEW Devon CCG are paying for all the space until the end of March 2019 and 38% of the space in Seaton Hospital is currently unoccupied.

We feel that with the co-operation of RDE and working with voluntary groups that the whole site could be utilised by providing additional clinics, encouraging voluntary groups to work together and use the space and including educational / encouragement on preventative health issues.

Em confirmed that she is committed wherever possible to a “one stop” service delivery to avoid people having to navigate through the current complexities.

Other subjects discussed


Dr Welland asked where the funding would come from to support preventative initiatives or help to get people ready for surgery who for example, are overweight and / or have mobility issues.


Em replied that the current work on the 10 year NHS plan is key to this and hoped that funding would be on a 5-7 year cycle as opposed to the current short term cycles.


For our report we need “did not attend” statistics for the post codes in our area involving clinics at the RDE Hospital.


Adel agreed to obtain

Point made

Jack Rowland confirmed that we have always wanted to take an Axe Valley approach on this subject and work with our counter-parts in Axminster to try and ensure that complimentary services are provided that would also reduce the travel difficulties faced by people having to travel to Exeter whether by car or particularly public transport.

Agreed next steps

Subject Action by
Draft a needs report to send to RDE SAHM Steering Group by 4 December
Carry out a local survey SAHM Steering Group – date to be agreed on 20 November
Meet Axminster counterparts re Axe Valley approach SAHM Steering Group – as soon as possible
RDE to arrange a meeting of the 12 community health groups in Devon RDE Trust – date to be confirmed
Did not attend stats to be sent to SAHM Adel Jones – 19 November

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