Orsett Hospital is officially set to close as part of a major healthcare shakeup across mid and south Essex.

The closure of the hospital will see all healthcare services transferred to new medical centres which will be located across Thurrock, Basildon and Brentwood.

It comes as the region faces one of the biggest shakeups in its history in an effort to solve a healthcare crisis which has resulted in some of the lowest staffing levels in the country.

The hospital, which offers a minor injury unit as well as clinics such as dermatology, neurology and pain management, will remain in use until construction of the new medical centres has been completed and all services have been transferred.

The decision is seen as the most cost-effective option as it is estimated that it could cost up to £10million to bring facilities in the ageing building up to date.

While the move of some services to Basildon and Brentwood will be beneficial for patients living in those towns, it could mean some Thurrock patients will need to travel further to be treated.

A recent public consultation found there is significant opposition to the move from residents in Thurrock and the Thurrock Labour Group recently called on the council to work with partners in the NHS to look at options to keep the hospital open and for all services to remain within the borough.

Ahead of the closure further public engagement with residents will take place through a ‘People’s Panel’ which will be formed with the support from Healthwatch organisation in Thurrock and Essex.