Jennette Arnold
London assembly member for North East London — fighting your corner at City Hall

London Assembly highlights serious concerns on proposals to close Lewisham A&E

Assembly highlights serious concerns on proposals to close Lewisham A&E

The London Assembly’s Health and Environment Committee has expressed serious concerns about the consultation[1] on proposals to close Lewisham A&E.

Following a meeting[2] with health experts as part of its on-going review of the changes to the NHS in the capital, the Committee said more analysis and modelling is needed to assess the impact of the proposals – particularly on whether the new hospital structure will be able to cope with the population’s needs, both now and in the future.

In their response[3] to the consultation, Committee Members questioned the robustness of data in the consultation document used for estimating travel times to remaining A&E units. Members called for independent validation of the methodology used.

Members also called for the impact on blue light journeys to be fully considered and wanted assurances that the London Ambulance Service has sufficient capacity to cope with the additional journey times for Lewisham residents.

The Committee was also concerned about:

Murad Qureshi AM, Chair of the London Assembly Health and Environment Committee, said:

“Proposals to close Lewisham A&E are such an important issue, not only for local residents, but for London as a whole. We’re worried about the data used to underpin the proposals, we’re concerned about the analysis and modelling used, and we’re questioning the consultation process, itself. Our views must be taken into account when recommendations are made to the Secretary of State.”

Notes:

The public consultation on the South London NHS Trust closed on 13 December and recommended a number of changes including downgrading A&E services at Lewisham University Hospital.

The Assembly committee meeting took place on 12 December 2012. Read the full agenda papers or watch the webcast.

Read the consultation response.

Murad Qureshi AM, Chair of the Health and Environment Committee http://www.london.gov.uk/moderngov/mgCommitteeDetails.aspx?ID=256

As well as investigating issues that matter to Londoners, the London Assembly acts as a check and a balance on the Mayor.