A&E, maternity ‘safe’ but threats remain

Hospital cuts protestors Glenn Eyre, left, Wendy Thompson, and Mark Starkey, founder of the Facebook protest page. Photo by Andrew Higgins 124916a 04/12/12
Hospital cuts protestors Glenn Eyre, left, Wendy Thompson, and Mark Starkey, founder of the Facebook protest page. Photo by Andrew Higgins 124916a 04/12/12

Health chiefs have pledged that A&E and maternity provision at Scarborough Hospital will be safeguarded – but fears remain over the future of other services.

Leading figures in the town have vowed to cast a watchful eye over future developments amid fears services will still be curtailed in the wake of planned cuts in North Yorkshire’s NHS.

As reported last week, there had been proposals to close the A&E department after daylight hours, and to downgrade 
maternity provision.

Scarborough’s MP Robert Goodwill has threatened to pull rank on NHS chiefs if they go back on their word and 
has promised to monitor the issue. The borough council is also gearing up for battle ahead of an announcement from NHS bosses next month, which will see a shortlist of money-saving options drawn up.

The vice chairman of North Yorkshire County Council’s scrutiny of health committee, Cllr John Blackie, said the East Coast could “count on him” to do everything in his power to retain services.

And patients’ group spokesman Leo McGrory has arranged a public meeting in the town next month in an effort to ensure residents are kept up to date with the proposals.

It comes after Simon Cox, shadow chief officer for NHS Scarborough and Ryedale Clinical Group, moved to allay fears that the hospital’s casualty department and maternity service would be affected.

Following a huge response to the Scarborough News’ Save Our Hospital campaign, we are now preparing to continue the fight in a bid to safeguard other vital hospital services. The move has been backed by Mark Starkey, of Newby, who set up a group on Facebook to protect the A&E department.

- Buy this week’s Scarborough News, out today, to see full campaign coverage. Alternatively download the Scarborough News iPad app, which shows the full paper in its entirety online.