West London A&E service under threat

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West London A&E service under threat
30th July 2014

The proposed closure of large sections of three London hospitals led to a heated debate between Labour and Conservative representatives on London Live on Wednesday morning. 

Imperial Healthcare Trust, which runs Charing Cross, Hammersmith and St Mary’s Hospitals, last week revealed details of their plans for “changes” to the three sites. 

However, the “changes” have been described by some, such as Shadow Justice Minister and MP for Hammersmith, Andy Slaughter, as closures. 

Slaughter debated the proposals with Peter Graham, Chairman of Hammersmith Conservatives, who is adamant that the changes will improve services for patients. 

“Specialist consultants and specialist units improve the outcomes. More specialisation will save lives,” Graham insisted.

But Slaughter rejected Graham’s claims and urged him to “listen to the people” who voted him out of office in May’s local elections. 

“This is a political decision, it’s about the privatisation and cuts in our health service,” said Slaughter.

 

With Hammersmith Hospital set to lose its A&E department, local residents are worried about what the closures could mean for them.

Desi Cranebrugh, a campaigner, pointed out that even young children are beginning to realise what is happening and they aren’t happy about it. 

 

London Live’s Ariana Perez went out on the streets to find out how the plans to remove the A&E departments have remained in place, despite strong opposition from the public. 

She spoke to just a few of the 100,000 signatories who are in opposition to the closures.

 

However, the company behind the changes are standing by their decision and insist they are simply adjusting to the “nature of disease today”. 

Imperial College Healthcare CEO, Tracey Batten, said: “Patients needs are changing and the NHS needs to continue to change to deliver the right sorts of services into the future.”  

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