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Last Updated: Thursday, 6 September 2007, 08:06 GMT 09:06 UK
West Cumbria to get new hospital
A new hospital is likely to be built in West Cumbria, after a lengthy campaign to retain services in the area.

Cumbria Primary Care Trust said the new unit could be built in or near to existing facilities in Whitehaven.

A final decision is due to be taken by the region's strategic health authority later this month.

Facilities at the existing West Cumberland Hospital are the subject of a review into wider health provision in the west of the county.

Patient groups were concerned that existing accident and emergency provision and maternity facilities would be lost when the hospital closed.

'Excellent support'

But Maggie Chadwick, chair of Cumbria Primary Care Trust, said the decision to build a new facility was the result of "people power".

She said: "We are very interested in people power and what people want, sadly we can not always give people what they want.

"But on this occasion, with some excellent support from the strategic health authority, we are on the brink of celebrating and saying yes, as part of the plan, a new hospital in the west.

"We don't know where exactly, whether it will be in or around Whitehaven, but it will replace and retain services."

Earlier this year campaigners took to the streets amid fears health services would be lost in Whitehaven.

Ms Chadwick said officials had taken on board concerns.

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