Future Fit: NHS England reviewing business case for Shropshire health shake-up
NHS England has confirmed it is currently reviewing plans for an overhaul of the county's major hospital services ahead of public consultation.
It comes after Shropshire's Clinical Commissioning Group and its Telford & Wrekin counterparts signed off on Future Fit's "pre-consultation business case" and consultation documents, which will be used to ask the public what they think.
NHS England has now been asked to validate the documents, a process expected to take around two weeks, then the public will finally get the long-awaited opportunity to make their own comments on the proposals from early December.
Ruth Coulthard, an NHS England spokeswoman, said: “NHS England had a constructive meeting with Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin CCGs and representatives from the hospital trust last week regarding the pre-consultation business case for Shropshire Future Fit.
"We will be providing formal feedback in due course.”
READ MORE ON THIS STORY:
- Decision paves way for public to have say on hospital changes
- Star comment: Progress at last on Future Fit
The consultation will put forward a preferred option for changes to the county's hospitals where Royal Shrewsbury Hospital becomes an emergency centre and the base for consultant-led women and children's services in the county, while Princess Royal Hospital Telford takes on responsibility for providing planned care.
If they are validated within two weeks then the consultation will begin in December, and will last for 14 weeks.
The consultation had initially been planned to last for 12 weeks but it was agreed to extend it by two weeks if it takes place over the Christmas period.
The process has faced considerable delay with disagreement over the proposals and the threat of a legal challenge from Telford & Wrekin Council, leading to a review of the plans.
The authority has been unhappy at the prospect of Princess Royal Hospital losing its A&E and consultant-led women and children's unit under the changes.