Get involved: send your pictures, video, news & views by texting ENFIELD NEWS to 80360, or email us
An NHS board have given the green light to close Chase Farm Hospital's accident and emergency and maternity wards
A significant blow to the future of key services at Chase Farm Hospital was struck as the NHS trust responsible for its services gave the go-ahead for changes this November.
For nearly ten years, protesters have fought to keep the Accident and Emergency and maternity wards at the hospital in The Ridgeway, Enfield, open but hopes of it remaining open suffered a huge blow as the Barnet & Chase Farm Hospitals NHS Trust board gave the all clear for changes to be made.
This will now result in maternity services being relocated to North Middlesex University in Sterling Way, Edmonton, and Barnet Hospital after the meeting on Friday, September 13 gave the all-clear.
A&E and children's inpatient services will also be based at both hospitals.
Campaigner and secretary of the North East London Council for Action, Bill Rogers, was disappointed by the latest news but not surprised.
He said: “It is nothing more than we expected, we have been campaigning for years and years and this is very sad to hear. We know that we are in a fight here and we will continue to battle on against government policy.”
With the final decision due at a Clinical Commissioning Group meeting on Wednesday, September 25, now appearing to be little more than a formality, Chase Farm Hospital will subsequently open an urgent care centre from 9am until 9pm everyday for adults and children with serious, but not life-threatening, illnesses and injuries.
However, Mr Rogers feels there is still some hope at the meeting but admits it is very slim.
He said: “You never know, there is a lot of pressure on the CCG and I can guarantee we will be lobbying at the meeting.
“The Government is wrecking the NHS. We saw it this week where the Royal London Hospital had to implement a ‘one-in-one-out’ strategy because they did not have enough beds to cope with the demand and this is what we will see at Barnet and North Middlesex if Chase Farm shuts."
Nearly £115million will be spent on the changes at all three hospitals, with more doctors, nurses, midwives and clinical specialists also to be recruited.
Barnet & Chase Farm Hospitals NHS Trust’s director of clinical strategy Cathy Geddes said: “This marks an important step in our journey towards ensuring people consistently get the highest standards of service possible.
“The real risk is continuing with the status quo, and staff at both hospitals are keen to see changes that will enable them to provide consistently high-quality services.”
A final decision on the timing of the changes will be made at the meeting on September 25.
Comments are closed on this article.