Hospital campaigners say ‘we haven’t been listened to’ over A&E closure plans

Campaigners against the downgrade of services at Ealing Hospital outside the Royal Courts of Justice

Campaigners against the downgrade of services at Ealing Hospital outside the Royal Courts of Justice today. Picture: Alain Tolhurst - Credit: Archant

Campaigners against the downgrade of Central Middlesex and three other hospitals in London have spoken at their frustration over the NHS plans.

Central Middlesex Hospital will lose its A&E

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

Ealing Council is at court this morning for an oral hearing to try and get a review of plans to shut A&E departments in the hospital in Acton Lane, and its counterparts in Ealing, Central Middlesex, Hammersmith and Charing Cross.

Previously a judge rejected Ealing’s application for the review, so the authority has gone back today to the Royal Courts of Justice in central London.

The council has also referred the issue to the secretary of state for health, Jeremy Hunt, who has ordered an independent panel to review the NHS plans.

Campaigners outside the court say they have not been listened to.

Dean Gilligan from the GMB Union said: “We haven’t been listened to, we’ve had meeting after meeting, it’s been a whitewash.”

Mr Gilligan said there would be up to 5,000 redundancies if the cuts to services took place at all four hospitals.

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Oliver New from Ealing Trade Unions Council said: “The problem is the process has been rigged from the beginning.

“The consultation was designed to only give the results they wanted.

“If there’s any natural justice the judges will say the process was unfair.

“But I’m not that optimistic.”

Raj Gill, from the Ealing Save Our Hospital Campaign, said: “With any legal system you can never be 100 per cent confident, but I think the communities in north London are one in terms of the defence of the A+E departments and the NHS in general.

“They are under attack from people in the NHS and the government.

“It’s not just about us it’s about Lewisham, Whittington, other hospitals in London and across the country.

“We can’t the watch the NHS being broken up and eroded in front of our eyes.”

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