Frequently asked questions

The programme is run by NHS Surrey Downs, Sutton and Merton clinical commissioning groups who are responsible for planning care for people in these areas. The programme of work aims to tackle the challenges at Epsom and St Helier hospitals around clinical standards, finances and estates.

We want to make sure local people have the best quality health services for generations to come, in modern, safe buildings with the majority of services provided on both hospital sites and in the community, close to people’s homes.

We are looking to address the significant challenges at Epsom and St Helier hospitals around clinical standards, finances and estates. Many of the buildings were built before the NHS existed and are not fit for purpose, the Trust is the only one in south West London that cannot meet set clinical standards and it has a growing financial deficit, which means the Trust cannot take the necessary action to address the other challenges.

No, we have said we need all our doctors, all the beds and all our hospitals in the local area. We are proposing to build a new facility in the area for our sickest and most at risk patients, while still keeping the majority of services on both the St Helier and Epsom sites.

No, we are predicting a small increase in beds in the local area.

No, we need all our doctors in the local area. The new model means more of our senior doctors are available when people really need them.

Yes, these proposals are aimed at addressing issues around staffing, clinical standards and improving patient care. Epsom and St Helier is the only Trust in South West London that currently does not meet the set clinical standards. The clinical model is being reviewed by independent Clinical Senates from London and the South East and assured by NHS England and NHS Improvement.

Yes, since July 2018 we have been working with Epsom and St Helier, Kingston, Croydon, St George’s, Ashford St Peter’s, Royal Surrey and Surrey and Sussex hospitals and the London Ambulance Service and South East Coast Ambulance Service. We are looking at any possible impacts of the different options on these local services. A full assessment is being done and will be considered.

No, we are doing all the work now to help us decide if there is a preferred option(s) that we would take forward to a public consultation.

The CCGs and the Trust are working closely together to address the challenges we have outlined in our case for change. The Trust is saying that it cannot continue to deliver its current services without changes being made.

Engagement is the ongoing discussions organisations have with key interest groups and communities to take into account people’s views on ideas at the earliest possible stage.  

Consultation is a statutory process undertaken when there is a proposal to change healthcare services and where the change is considered significant. NHS organisations will work with local government to consider whether a specific change is significant and if consultation is required. During consultation the NHS will seek to take the views of everyone who wishes to participate.

The options workshops were one part of the options consideration process, which is still ongoing. The workshops were advertised, and members of the public were recruited, as well as patient representatives, clinical staff, NHS professionals and other experts. We were aiming for a balanced group that reflected the local area.  

The workshops considered a wide range of criteria including travel, equalities, deprivation, clinical quality and deliverability. They were independently facilitated and scrutinised to ensure we ran a fair and robust process.

Read more information about the workshops and the options consideration process.

We are continuing to work with:  

  • Local people and their representatives, MPs and Councillors, doctors and nurses community groups, local councils and NHS regulators to test our options as well as the work we have done to date.
  • Neighbouring hospitals and ambulance services to understand the impact of potential changes at Epsom and St Helier on other local NHS providers.
  • Independent clinical experts and local GPs, hospital doctors and nurses to develop the clinical model for our potential options.
  • External experts and an independently chaired impact assessment steering group to look at the full range of potential positive and negative impacts of our proposals on the local population, and particularly on people and communities where change might have more of an impact.

Below you can find our proposed timeline, however this is subject to change depending on the feedback from our regulators.

Improving Healthcare Together