Brent councillors vote against referring casualty closure plans to the secretary of state

Central Middlesex Hospital will lose its A&E department

Central Middlesex Hospital will lose its A&E department - Credit: Archant

The borough’s Health Partnership Overview and Scrutiny Committee will not contest proposals for Central Middlesex Hospital

Councillors confirmed last night that they would not be referring the impending closure of Central Middlesex Hospital’s (CMH) Accident and Emergency (A&E) unit to the secretary of state.

Brent Council’s Health Partnership Overview and Scrutiny Committee made the decision during a discussion at the Town Hall last night.

Campaigners opposed to the plans had been hoping that the council would follow their neighbours at Ealing Council and ask Jeremy Hunt, secretary of state for health to asses the plans, a move which could delay the process.

However, instead of voting for a referral, councillors put forward a motion ensuring that the plans were ‘thoroughly examined’ and that services were not changed unless they proved to deliver a successful outcome for residents.

The closure of the A&E unit at CMH, in Acton Lane, Harlesden, forms part of the Shaping a Healthier Future (SAHF) plans, an NHS shake up which will have an impact in eight north west London boroughs.

Although the plans claim to bring care closer to home and NHS bosses say it is vital they go through, campaigners in Brent have been angry at the lack of consultation and say the A&E unit serves the borough’s most deprived residents.

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The plans will also result in the closure of casualty units at Ealing Hospital, Hammersmith and Charing Cross Hospitals.

The A&E at CMH was completely rebuilt six years ago at a cost of £65m but medical directors for the SAHF scheme have claimed it is not viable to keep it open.