Extraordinary meeting on PRH Future to discuss Health Secretary’s decision

The Secretary of State for Health and Social Care faces the possibility of condemnation from Telford & Wrekin Council over his decision to downgrade vital services at Princess Royal Hospital.

Extraordinary meeting on PRH Future to discuss Health Secretary’s decision

It follows the decision last week by Matt Hancock MP after the Council referred Future Fit’s plans to him earlier this year.

The Health Secretary’s decision would allow Future Fit to downgrade A&E at Telford and close the Princess Royal Hospital’s consultant-led Women and Children’s Centre.

Future Fit’s plan would mean the Women and Children’s Centre would move to the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital which would also be home to the county’s only full 24/7 A&E.

Under Future Fit, Telford’s A&E department would be replaced by an urgent care centre, although Mr Hancock has asked NHS England for advice on “how the ‘urgent care model’ can be delivered through an ‘A&E Local’.”

The motion proposed by Council Leader Shaun Davies and seconded by Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care Councillor Andy Buford, will be discussed at 6pm on Thursday 17 October at The Place Telford in Oakengates.

The motion reads: “This Council condemns the Health Secretary’s decision to allow Future Fit to progress. This will have a detrimental impact on residents of Telford and Wrekin and put lives at risk. The decision flies in the face of the evidence and common sense. The decision made by the Secretary of State is simply wrong. At this late stage we call on the government to halt Future Fit.

“Such moves will mean that Telford will be one of the biggest Towns in the Country without a full A&E. The closure of the Consultant Led Women and Childrens Unit flies in the face of clinical evidence.

“Telford & Wrekin Council has fought this process every step of the way and will continue to fight for the best interests of our residents. This should not be about politics: This Council expects our MPs to support the Council and use every parliamentary means to ensure our Consultant led Women and Children Unit is retained and our A&E is not downgraded.”

Councillor Shaun Davies said: “We need to come together as a borough, as residents, as a business community and as politicians from all political parties to get the Health Secretary to come from Whitehall to join us here at the Town Hall for us to explain the impact of this decision on the residents of Telford and Wrekin.

Councillor Arnold England, former Cabinet Member for Health and who will chair the meeting said: “This will be a very important meeting. I was part of the campaign to bring a district general hospital to Telford. Now, more than 40 years later, it faces being downgraded.

“It is vital that the Health Secretary understands the seriousness of his decision and the outcry it has generated from the public and politicians from all sides.”

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