BMA hits out at Accident & Emergency proposals

THE proposed service changes by NHS London for the north central sector of the capital (Camden, Islington, Haringey, Barnet, Enfield) are being implemented without active involvement of the public or the professionals involved in delivering the services.

THE proposed service changes by NHS London for the north central sector of the capital (Camden, Islington, Haringey, Barnet, Enfield) are being implemented without active involvement of the public or the professionals involved in delivering the services.

As a group of front line doctors working in both hospitals and in the community we are gravely concerned about the implications of these changes which include transferring the majority of care currently delivered in hospitals into the community and the consequent downgrading of many acute hospitals.

These plans are supposed to be submitted to NHS London by the end of this year. This will involve loss of key services including emergency surgery, paediatrics and maternity services with the resultant loss of full A&E services in many hospitals.

In our local area the hospitals with A&E services under threat include the Whittington, the Homerton and University College Hospital.


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In north west London, the plans have already been proposed which will affect Ealing, Hillingdon, West Middlesex and Chelsea and Westminster hospitals. It has already happened in the south east where Queen Mary's Sidcup has recently lost 24-hour emergency care. Similar plans are being drawn up for implementation across London after the next General Election.

As clinicians we spend our lives striving to improve patient care so we embrace change when it benefits patients. We are worried about the pace of change as community services are in no position to take on this massive role and the loss of emergency services will affect all of your readers.

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There has been no meaningful involvement of the public or professionals by NHS London. We believe that we all should have a voice in these important proposals.

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