Future Fit: Telford MP writes to Health Secretary after pensioner's death at Shrewsbury Hospital
Telford's MP has asked the Health Secretary to give serious consideration to the circumstances surrounding the death of a pensioner when deciding how to progress with the Future Fit proposals.
Jeffrey Passmore, 79, of Stirchley, died on a busy night at Royal Shrewsbury Hospital on April 24 after being admitted with pains in his stomach, which turned out to be an abdominal aortic aneurysm.
His inquest last week was told that his condition did not appear serious to nurses, so other patients were prioritised.
But after a CT scan his condition deteriorated quickly and he died.
Hospital staff said they were dealing with increased demands, but admitted an unacceptable delay, and Shropshire coroner John Ellery said it possibly caused or contributed to his death.
Telford MP Lucy Allan says she wrote to Health Secretary Matt Hancock with concerns following the outcome of his inquest.
In her letter, she raised concerns about A&E waiting times at Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH), which runs RSH and Telford's Princess Royal Hospital, and the impact Future Fit may have if the plans are allowed to go ahead.
Mr Hancock is currently deciding whether the decision by health commissioners, to have a single A&E in the county in Shrewsbury, needs to be reviewed.
Under the plans, the A&E in Telford would be downgraded to an urgent care centre and PRH would take over responsibility for planned care.
Ms Allan highlighted to Mr Hancock that there will be increased travel times and said she has concerns around the 'extra delay to patients being able to access care promptly'.
She said: “I have raised this matter with the Secretary of State, Matt Hancock, to bring to his attention the serious concerns I have about this incident and how events such as this one may occur more frequently if the Future Fit proposals go ahead.
"Loss of facilities to Shrewsbury will increase the travel time and inevitably increase delays in accessing treatment.
"We can see that delays can have fatal consequences.
“We need to ensure that all patients receive prompt assessment and are dealt with on a needs basis and the most critical of cases prioritised.”
Last week, Mr Ellery concluded that Mr Passmore had died from natural causes.
An Independent Reconfiguration Panel, instructed by Mr Hancock to look at the Future Fit plans, visited the county last month to interview hospital staff, council bosses, health commissioners and other interested groups.
The panel's feedback has been passed to Mr Hancock, who will ultimately decide whether the decision needs to be reviewed.
A formal referral, asking for the review, was made by Telford & Wrekin Council.
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