Temporary changes to our services over the winter period

13 December 2023

The NHS across Sussex has been working hard to put plans in place that will allow services to remain safe and ensure local people can continue to access the best possible care as quickly as possible over the busy winter period. 

These plans focus on the national NHS priorities set out ahead of Christmas and New year period to protect patient safety, prioritise urgent and emergency care and achieve financial balance.

In order to achieve these plans, it is necessary for some services to be temporarily changed or reduced, to allow staff to be redeployed to other services so they can continue to be safe and of the highest quality. There's also a need to reduce the use of agency staff in order to manage resources effectively.

In line with this work, Sussex Partnership has reviewed all of its services to identify areas where we are able to redeploy staff as quickly as possible. As such, we have made the difficult decision to temporarily reduce the Memory Assessment and Dementia Services provided in West Sussex and in High Weald, Lewes and Havens in East Sussex, from January 2024 until end March 2024. 

In addition we are also planning to reduce the number of dementia beds we currently provide in Sussex from 50 to 40. 

Memory assessment and dementia services 

Please be assured that we will continue to see patients who have started their treatment and assessment programme and we will remain open to referrals. 

During the period of temporary redeployment, we will not be able to see new patients and support them as soon as we would like. 

We are contacting patients, their families and carers if an initial appointment needs to be rescheduled. If you do not hear from us, please continue to attend your appointment as planned.

Dementia bed provision 

We are working to enable patients who are ready for discharge to be able to leave safely and we will be supporting those who continue to need a bed, along with their families and carers, to find the most appropriate alternative care.

We appreciate how important both these services are to the people who use them; their families and carers, and we have explored all other options to allow us to temporarily redeploy staff before taking these very difficult decisions. 

We are currently working through detailed arrangements with our staff and will be communicating with people who use these services to let them know more detailed information about the planned changes.