Acute hospital-based stroke services

NHS Somerset is reviewing our hyper acute and acute stroke services in Somerset.

Update 25 January 2024

Today, NHS Somerset Board approved recommendations to improve stroke services in Somerset.

The plans, developed by clinicians, people working in stroke services, key stakeholders and people with lived experience of stroke, will mean changes to:

  • Hyper acute stroke services, with the establishment of a single Hyper Acute Stroke Unit at Musgrove Park in Taunton, providing 24/7 emergency treatment. Research shows that more people survive stroke and are able to live independently when specialised stroke services are located in one place.
  • Ongoing hospital treatment, with acute stroke units at both Musgrove Park Hospital, Taunton and Yeovil District Hospital, Yeovil. Maintaining two acute stroke units would mean that following their emergency stroke treatment, patients could move to Yeovil District Hospital if this was closer to where they live.
  • Patients would be taken to their nearest hyper acute stroke unit. This could be out of Somerset if it was closer such as Dorset County Hospital, Dorchester.

Changes will not take place straightaway and will be phased over the next 18 months.

Update 18 January 2024

Following more detailed modelling of the preferred option for the future of hyper acute and acute stroke services in Somerset, recommendations to improve hyper acute and acute strokes services in Somerset will be presented to the NHS Somerset Board for a decision next week, 25 January 2024.

The recommendations are designed to ensure we have safe, sustainable stroke services in Somerset. The recommendations have been further developed by senior clinicians, health and care staff and people with lived experience of stroke following a public consultation earlier this year.

View the Board report and Decision-Making Business Case on the NHS Somerset website.

The Board meeting will be held in public, public questions can be submitted in advance of the meeting - Board papers and meetings - NHS Somerset ICB. The deadline for the receipt of public questions for the Board meeting has been extended to noon on Monday 22 January 2024.

Find out more.

Update 30 November 2023

NHS Somerset Board has accepted a recommendation to take forward one preferred option for stroke services in Somerset for more detailed analysis. Following further evaluation, a final recommendation whether to proceed with this option will be made to the Board in a decision-making business case.

The preferred option for the future proposes a hyper acute stroke unit at Musgrove Park Hospital, Taunton and acute stroke units at both Yeovil District Hospital and Musgrove Park Hospital.

The final decision-making business case is expected to be considered by the NHS Somerset Board in January.

Find out more.

Update: September 2023

NHS Somerset completed its 12-week public consultation in April 2023, which gathered feedback about the future of acute hospital-based stroke services in Somerset, from people living in Somerset and people who use Somerset hospitals. We wish to thank everyone that took part and shared their views.

The public consultation is one part of a bigger piece of ongoing work, that continues to consider all aspects of the proposed changes to stroke services, including financial, geographical, logistic and operational considerations. Part of the process includes a further options appraisal where a range of information will be reviewed to get to a preferred option.

We expect to have this work completed early next year, so that we will be able to put forward a final decision-making business case to the NHS Somerset Board.

The final decision-making business case will take into account all of the aspects considered, including the public consultation feedback. This review is not about saving money, but focuses on creating safe and sustainable stroke services in Somerset. All of the evidence gathered will enable the Board to make an informed decision on the best way forward.

The final decision-making meeting will be held in public to allow those interested to hear the discussion and how the decision is made.

You can read more about the proposed changes and reasons why change is needed on this section of the website.

If you have any questions or would like to get in touch with us, please email us at

Stroke is a sudden and life-changing event, and is a leading cause of death and disability in the UK. Over recent years, there have been significant advances in proven, highly effective methods of stroke treatment and care.


NHS Somerset has just finished a public consultation to gather feedback about the future of acute hospital based stroke services in Somerset, from people living in Somerset and people who use Somerset hospitals. The consultation ran for 12 weeks from Monday 30 January 2023 until Monday 23 April 2023.

Feedback was gathered on the proposals for acute hospital based stroke services. Acute hospital based stroke services is the specialist hospital care people receive in the first few days and weeks when they first have a stroke.

We’re committed to understanding the needs of our local population to make sure we can continue to deliver the best possible health and care services in Somerset.

Read the consultation activity report to find out how we reached people during the consultation.

You an also read our 'you said, we are doing' which outlines key themes heard during the consultation and what we are doing at present.

You can also read our updated FAQs which answer questions which arose during and after the consultation.

Even though the consultation has ended you can still read the information on the proposals for hyper acute stroke services and acute stroke services in Somerset on these pages.

Read our full consultation document. We also have an easy read summary consultation document for those who need an easy read version.

There is also an aphasia friendly consultation document summary for those you need it.

You can also take a look at our consultation document summary version.