|Ealing Hospital Petition Reached 4,000|
Fears growing for the future for the borough's local health services
Thousands of people have signed a petition to save Ealing hospital.
It follows an NHS report released last month detailing four options for a proposed merger between Ealing Hospital Trust and North West London Hospitals Trust, which runs Northwick Park, Central Middlesex and St Marks hospitals.
It's feared that the preferred option is to close both Ealing and Central Middlesex Hospitals as district general hospitals.
Labour started a petition against any closures and has collected nearly 4000 signatures.
Dr Onkar Sahota, Labour’s candidate for Ealing and Hillingdon at the upcoming GLA elections, presented it to the Ealing council meeting.
During the debate councillors re-iterated their commitment to fighting any hospital closures.
Liberal Democrat Councillor Nigel Bakhai called on all parties to write a joint letter to Ealing Hospital Trust urging it to keep Ealing running as a district general hospital, which was welcomed by all.
Speaking after the council meeting Dr Sahota said: ''I have nothing against mergers if they reduce management costs and put more money into frontline services. However, this merger is about reducing investment and threatening services at our local hospital. It is the result of unprecedented and unnecessarily deep cuts in public services by the Conservative-led Government.
''This merger is being mis-sold to the public by saying that it is to improve the quality of healthcare at Ealing Hospital. This is not true.
''You don’t improve healthcare by closing beds, reducing services or making it more difficult to reach hospitals. We can’t trust the Tories to keep their promises and we can’t trust them with the NHS.''
A spokeswoman for Ealing Hospital Trust said no decision has yet been made, but both trusts are developing a business case for the merger, which is to be presented next March.
December 21, 2011