MPs’ anger at A&E

MPs Yvette Cooper and Jon Trickett at Pontefract Hospital.
MPs Yvette Cooper and Jon Trickett at Pontefract Hospital.
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FURIOUS MPs are urging health chiefs to save Pontefract Hospital’s accident and emergency department from the axe.

Hemsworth MP Jon Trickett and Pontefract and Castleford MP Yvette Cooper are calling on bosses at the Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust to secure the future of the department, which is “under review”.

Earlier this month, trust bosses confirmed they would look at “the need for, and provision of, a 24/7 consultant-led emergency department” at the Friarwood Road facility after the National Clinical Advisory Team recommended it should be shut.

The body – which checks any hospital service changes are in the best interests of patients – said it had “serious doubts” about the sustainability of Pontefract’s A&E unit and the safety of patients in the future.

It suggested patients were instead treated at A&E departments at Wakefield’s Pinderfields Hospital and Dewsbury and District Hospital, in a move which would save £3.8m.

Jon Trickett said: “These are completely unacceptable Tory cuts; it is a betrayal of policies promised to local people when Labour was in power. I will continue to fight for high quality A&E services for constituents.”

Ms Cooper said: “I am furious the trust is now considering closing Pontefract A&E. As a parent as well as a patient and local MP, I know how important this service is.

“We will fight this all the way. It is very disturbing that the trust is putting government cuts and reform plans ahead of patient care. They should be cutting patient waiting times not cutting vital services for our area.”

The trust said it was at the start of the review and would look at options which “improve clinical outcomes and efficiency and secure safe, sustainable and viable services”.

It would then consult residents about its plans before any decision was made.