Health Crisis: Health chief faces hospital grilling

A HEALTH chief will be quizzed about the decision to scrap plans for a hospital in Hatfield and to concentrate acute and emergency care at either Lister or the QEII. Patient representative groups, The East and North Herts NHS Trust and PCT Patient and Pub

A HEALTH chief will be quizzed about the decision to scrap plans for a hospital in Hatfield and to concentrate acute and emergency care at either Lister or the QEII.

Patient representative groups, The East and North Herts NHS Trust and PCT Patient and Public Involvement (PPI) Forums, are inviting the public to join them in questioning Anne Walker, chief executive of the East and North Hertfordshire and West Hertfordshire PCTs.

Chair of East and North Herts PCT PPI Forum, Terry Hearn, said: "Barely 12 months ago we were told the hospital board had rejected concentrating all its services on either the QEll or Lister.

"Now we're told all hospital services will be on one site - almost certainly the Lister.

"If all the doctors and nurses at the QEll were made redundant, how will the Lister be able to cope with the patients from there as well as the ones it treats now?

"When they were consulted, the people chose a new hospital in Hatfield.

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"They are the ones paying for it and they should be given what they want."

Beryl Jeffreys, chair of East and North Herts Hospital PPI Forum, said: "The health service in Hertfordshire has to clear its £90m debt, and some harsh decisions must be made, but at what cost?

"Change is inevitable but any change must put patients and not finance at the top of the agenda."

The meeting will take place in the Council Chamber, Campus West, Welwyn Garden City, on December 14 at 6.30pm.

For more information, contact Tim Hayward-Smith at the Forum Support Organisation on: 01707 695522/06 or email: timhayward-smith@cda4herts.org.uk

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