Health chiefs today came under pressure to tackle “falling down” hospitals after the threat to two west London A&Es was lifted.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock yesterday told Parliament that the downgrading of emergency departments at Charing Cross and Ealing hospitals “will not happen”.
They had been earmarked to be replaced by “local A&E” units in a shake-up of health services in west London known as Shaping A Healthier Future. Mr Hancock said the £500 million plan, which launched in 2012, was “no longer supported”.
Today Labour MP for Hammersmith Andy Slaughter said attention must now be on St Mary’s hospital in Paddington and improving facilities at “world class” Charing Cross and Ealing, which lost its maternity and children’s A&E departments.
Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust has a £600 million repairs backlog and is desperately searching for cash to transform St Mary’s, parts of which are 150 years old.
Mr Slaughter said: “They appear to have made this decision without any plan for what to do next. St Mary’s is falling down … This is an absolute debacle.”