Jeremy Hunt should be shown Future Fit timeline
I am sure that readers will appreciate the publication of the excellent Future Fit timeline in the Shropshire Star, January 1, and will have noted that:
In March 2014 a decision to close one of the A&Es was made, apparently without consultation, and not saying which one. It later proved to be the PRH. Remember it had been tried before.
In August 2015 Sath, in forecasting a deficit of £17.2m, claimed that the saving made by closing an A&E would not significantly change the financial situation.
Since then a fair proportion of £4m has been spent on relentlessly promoting this financially neutral proposal.
After many years, during which the opportunity has been taken to include the utterly irrational decision to include the transfer of the Women and Children’s Unit in the package, we are reaching the consultation stage.
One safe bet: If the design and manner of the consultation and the method of assessment is done by Sath and Future Fit, or a company of their choosing, it will inevitably reveal that Sath and Future Fit got everything right.
Unless major bodies, e.g. Telford & Wrekin Council and Shrewsbury Council etc are partners in developing the consultation material, it will be a back-slapping farce. One consistent factor has been the refusal, or inability, of Sath and Future Fit to make reasons for their decisions public.
Now we must be given facts in readable form, without “searching” the internet, or via voluminous minutes and reports, so the relevant conclusions can be scrutinised and if necessary challenged. Better still save the c£300m cost by scrapping the proposals and starting again with new terms of reference based on two A&Es and without historical prejudices.
This is what we need and want. Make it happen. Not convinced? Imagine the chaos over the past two weeks both within, and surrounding the RSH, if those who visited the PRH A&E and childrens’ unit had been forced to go to Shrewsbury. What consultant would want to work in Shropshire under those conditions?
Telford and The Wrekin MPs, who to their credit are fighting these proposals, should place the Shropshire Star timeline in front of Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt.