MP plans parliamentary pressure over Future Fit hospital delays

Shrewsbury MP Daniel Kawczynski says he will continue quizzing health ministers over Shropshire's protracted hospital plans.

Daniel Kawczynski MP said he was disappointed at the latest developments
Daniel Kawczynski MP said he was disappointed at the latest developments

A question to the Department of Health from Mr Kawczynski earlier this week revealed that the NHS wants a cheaper option to consider for 'Future Fit', the reorganisation of Shrewsbury & Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH).

The development throws doubt over whether SaTH will be able to accomplish all of its plans for its reorganisation of Telford's Princess Royal Hospital and Royal Shrewsbury Hospital, or if it will need to scale back the long-running proposals.

Mr Kawczynski said he is concerned about the delay to beginning work on Future Fit and the impact they are having on SaTH's struggling hospitals.

The trust remains in special measures following a critical Care Quality Commission inspection in 2018.

Mr Kawczynski said: "I was disappointed to receive the reply to my written parliamentary question.

"These delays are no longer acceptable. They are having a serious damaging effect on local patient care and safety. I will continue to work with Secretary of State for Health to ensure that Shropshire gets the health care services that it deserves."

Mr Kawczynski said he plans to press government health ministers over the issue in a bid to secure progress, adding: "I will be tabling a series of further written parliamentary questions on this issue over the coming months."

In his reply earlier this week, health minister Edward Argar said that the government now expected the business case for the SaTH proposal to be submitted by the end of March.

He said: "As of January 11, 2022, the department had not received the strategic outline business case (SOC), as it did not pass NHS England and NHS Improvement’s fundamental criteria review.

"On October 28, 2021, NHS England and NHS Improvement received the SOC from the Shrewsbury and Telford Hospitals NHS Trust and determined that it required further work and provide an option compliant with the £312 million allocation.

"Written feedback on the SOC was issued to the trust on November 17, 2021. The SOC is currently being amended by the trust and NHS England and NHS Improvement are expecting it to be resubmitted in the first quarter of 2022."

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