Jeremy Hunt has yesterday refused to answer questions about the future of Lewisham Hospital services after Vicky Foxcroft asked him to assure residents of Lewisham Deptford that all provisions would remain open.
Vicky’s question came after a report on the future of health services in South East London, entitled ‘Our Healthier South-East London’, was released earlier this year.
Vicky asked the Secretary of State: “Almost two years ago Lewisham took the Secretary of State and the previous Government to court over the closure of the A&E and maternity services at Lewisham Hospital and we won. In light of the recently released report ‘Our Healthier South-East London’ can the Secretary of State promise me that any further shake up of NHS services in South-East London will not involve the closure of any services at Lewisham Hospital?”
Mr Hunt replied: “What I can assure her is that we inherited deep seated problems in the old south London healthcare trust, we have dealt with those problems, there are more doctors and more nurses looking after her constituents and care is getting better in light of the difficult decisions we have taken.”
Vicky said after the question:
“On a day when we remember with pride the hard work of our emergency services and how vital they are to all of us in London and across the country, I asked Jeremy Hunt about the future of our hospital services in Lewisham and he couldn’t give me an answer.
“Although this is just a pre-consultation paper we cannot be complacent about the future of our local health services. Any changes or plans for local health provision have to come with a cast iron guarantee that our A&E and maternity units will remain open.
“We must be very vigilant in the coming months. Even though this is not a direct threat to our A&E, it will remind many Lewisham Residents of our recent fight against the Government and it makes me fearful about what the future may hold.
“I can assure the people of Lewisham I will be doing all in my power to fight against any large reorganisation to our health service in South East London, protecting all our local health services and the fantastic and vital service they provide.”
The Save Lewisham Hospital campaign has recently launched another petition of Lewisham residents regarding any further plans for closures at Lewisham Hospital, this can be found here.