We totally reject the claims by local Health bosses that it is safe to close the Children’s ward at Ealing hospital on June 30th. We believe that children may die as a result.
The Clinical Commissioning Group and their management consultants are making unsubstantiated claims so as to cut vital services. They were publicly proved wrong that it was OK to close the A&Es at Central Middlesex and Hammersmith Hospitals. Instead, delays for emergency treatment in North West London shot right up and became the highest in the whole country. Their investigation into that disaster was simply passed over to the same private companies who had recommended the cuts.
The closure of Maternity and the Children’s Ward is part of a plan to prepare closure of 300 beds and the A&E at Ealing Hospital.
Closing the Charlie Chaplin children’s ward and removing the paediatric consultants and other specialist staff would mean that local children would no longer be treated at Ealing E&E.
The CCG say ambulances will simply take children elsewhere, but 93% of children are taken to hospital by their families, not by ambulance so when there is an emergency cases would be subject to serious delays. They would have to be assessed at the non-specialist Urgent Care Centre, then await transport to another hospital – ambulances won’t do this- then await assessment and treatment at another hospital.
Even apart from the disastrous risk to emergency cases, other sick children will end up in hospital miles from home. How could a working parent from Southall or Hanwell possibly look after a child at home and visit another child in Northwick Park Hospital?
The introduction of a Rapid Access Clinic is no substitute for the existing service. It will only see a handful of children, it won’t deal with emergency cases and it can only be accessed by GPs. The CCG are using it as a smoke screen.
22,000 children are taken to Ealing Hospital annually. 6,000 are seen by A&E. How on earth will these be taken to other hospitals?
This closure is terrible news for local families and it should be stopped until basic questions are dealt with.
At our rally last Saturday, Consultant Paediatrician Tony O’Sullivan said:
“No paediatricians, no guarantee of paediatric nurses, I just think that this is absolutely disgraceful people will die from that and some of them will be children.”