Lynne Featherstone MP continues Hospital campaign following Whittington Public Meeting

Lynne Featherstone MP addresses the audience at the public meeting

On Friday, Lynne Featherstone MP held a public meeting to enable residents to put questions to the Whittington Hospital Board.

In January, the Hospital Board announced that they would be selling off buildings in the north of the site. Concerns arose due to the lack of detailed information and consultation on the plans.

The Liberal Democrat MP called the meeting in order to give residents a chance to have their voices heard, and to assist the Board with their programme of public engagement.

In response to residents’ questions, the Board gave a further account of how they would reinvest the £17million from the sale of buildings into maternity services and an emergency day care centre to support A&E.

The Board also confirmed that they aimed to reduce the number of hospital beds from 360 to 300, whilst increasing integrated care in the community.

At the end of the meeting a number of residents said they felt more reassured about the plans.

Cllr David Winskill, Haringey Lib Dem lead on Health, said:

“This is just the type of meeting that the Whittington should have been holding with patients and carers well before the estates strategy got anywhere near a Board level decision.

Residents are right to be suspicious and asked some really well informed questions that moved the debate along and raised issues that the strategy didn’t touch on.

More support services for the vulnerable should be guaranteed before there is a substantial extension of their Integrated Care strategy.”

Following the meeting, Lynne Featherstone MP said:

“In response to our 2500 strong petition, the Board have given assurances that no services will be lost until equal or better replacement services are in place. Furthermore, the Board has now started to communicate these assurances directly with residents.

“That is not to say I am without concern. It is absolutely vital that, when care is transferred to the community, the Hospital make sure that the arrangements are in place and properly funded prior to any changes.

“I will therefore continue my campaign to ensure that no services are lost until equal or better services are in place, either in the hospital itself or in the community.”