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'Bullying and pressure' - Shrewsbury MP blames Telford council campaign for health boss's departure

By Dominic Robertson | Shrewsbury | News | Published:

Shrewsbury's MP has questioned whether pressure from Telford & Wrekin Council has led to the departure of the chief executive of the county's major hospitals.

Daniel Kawczynski

Simon Wright, CEO of Shrewsbury & Telford Hospital NHS Trust, which manages Royal Shrewsbury Hospital (RSH) and Princess Royal Hospital Telford (PRH), revealed this week that he had decided to leave his post to take another NHS job.

It comes as the trust awaits the green light for its major reorganisation project, called Future Fit, which would see the county's only A&E based at RSH, along with consultant led women & children's services, which would move from PRH.

Labour-run Telford & Wrekin Council has been resolute in its opposition to the plans, reflecting the response of its residents to the official consultation on the proposal.

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It has requested the plan is scrapped by the Health Secretary, who is currently considering the request, while the authority's leader, Councillor Shaun Davies had previously called for Mr Wright to resign.

Now Daniel Kawczynski, Conservative MP for Shrewsbury & Atcham, has questioned whether the pressure has played a part in Mr Wright's departure.

He has also reiterated his call for the council to be abolished, and for the county to be governed by one authority.

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He said: "I have been told from many doctors and former chief executives that the pressure put on them by Telford & Wrekin Council has led to serious problems and has led to people leaving.

"Why are there so many changes at our hospitals? What are the root causes? And I would question whether it is the bullying and constant pressure put on them by a medically illiterate body that seeks to overturn the Future Fit decision.

"Doctors have been empowered with the 2011 legislation to allow things like Future Fit to take place, managed by the people who are at the coalface of providing this service day-in-day-out.

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"They have put five years into this brilliant proposal that has garnered the biggest single injection of cash into the local NHS since its inception, and because of Telford & Wrekin Council this money is still not there and is being put at risk.

"Telford council needs to be abolished. It is a damaging force to the interest of people in Shropshire."

Responding to Mr Kawczynski on Twitter, Councillor Davies, argued that Telford & Wrekin Council has worked with Sath to improve services.

He wrote: What has Telford & Wrekin Council (with our community) done with Sath?

"Refurbished homes so new doctors can live rent free during their training.

"Arranged programs so commonwealth doctors can come here and work.

"Worked with others so new nurses can be trained."

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