STAFFORD’S MP has paid tribute to the work of campaigners in securing an improved deal over the future of Stafford Hospital but said the fight for acute services must continue.
Jeremy Lefroy talked to the Newsletter following the publication of the final report by administrator’s into Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation trust - which recommends the trust be dissolved and Stafford Hospital taken over by University Hospital of North Staffordshire.
“The news today that Stafford will continue to be a vital major hospital providing a very wide range of acute and elective services to the local community in partnership with UNHS is welcome, as is the fact that this partnership will give University Hospital status to Stafford.
“We have come a long way from the proposals at the beginning of the year to reduce Stafford to a community hospital. It is only through the tireless support of the local community, through Support Stafford Hospital, plus the hard work of the staff at the hospital, that has made today possible,” he said. “The fact that Stafford is now one of the top performing hospitals in our region is testament to that.”
Mr Lefroy said, however, the proposals to remove paediatrics from Stafford did not meet the nedds of the local community.
“I continue to maintain that there must be 24/7 access for children into Stafford as well as inpatient paediatrics,” he said.
“I welcome the fact that children will continue to be born in Stafford, but the rise in the birth rate in Stafford, plus the proposed expansion of our community, means that consultant led maternity services continue to be the best solution.
“One of the cornerstones of the NHS has always been patient choice and the people of Stafford have chosen to have maternity and paediatric services at Stafford.
“I will continue to fight to ensure that their voice is heard.”