‘Can do attitude needed’ says MP

MPs Yvette Cooper and Jon Trickett at Pontefract Hospital.
MPs Yvette Cooper and Jon Trickett at Pontefract Hospital.

HEMSWORTH MP Jon Trickett demanded action over the overnight closure of Pontefract A&E at a meeting with NHS bosses.

Mr Trickett, along with district MPs Mary Creagh, Yvette Cooper and Ed Balls, met bosses at Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust last Friday.

The A&E was closed temporarily from 10pm to 8am after trust bosses said they had struggled to recruit enough doctors to staff it.

The trust said the closure was in the interest of patient safety and it would reopen the A&E as soon as enough doctors are recruited.

But the MPs have raised fears over patient safety and increased pressure on the A&E department at Wakefield’s Pinderfields Hospital, which will treat extra patients from Pontefract.

Mr Trickett said after the meeting: “We were told this closure is temporary and I take that to mean a short period of time.

“We were putting suggestions forward and the trust were saying they can’t do it for this or that reason. I said I don’t want to hear “can’t do”. I want a “can do” attitude.

“My view is that this is putting patient safety at Pinderfields at risk as well. It is not in anybody’s interests to have longer and longer queues at Pinderfields because services are being pushed there from Pontefract. It is both hospitals that are at stake here.”

MPs have also lobbied health ministers over the closure.