GMB Slam Epsom and St Helier NHS Trust Chief Executive and Elected Politicians for Hoodwinking Electorate on Plans To Shut Both Hospitals and Replace Them with Single Facility with 250 Less Beds

Local politicians like Chris Grayling, Paul Scully, Tom Brake and Siobhan McDonagh should do the job that they were elected to do which is to defend our two acute hospitals says GMB

Epsom and St Helier NHS Trust

GMB, the union for workers in health and care sector, is accusing Daniel Elkeles the chief executive of the Epsom and St Helier NHS Trust of colluding with elected politicians in an attempt to hoodwink the electorate over plans to shut down both St Helier and Epsom Hospitals and replace them with one new hospital with a net loss of 250 beds.

GMB is further accusing local politicians and local political parties of trying to bypass the proper involvement of the electorate in what are crucial decisions on the configuration of the location of acute services in the area.

The Epsom and St Helier NHS Trust has guaranteed to maintain acute services at both hospitals till 2020. After that there are proposals to close these acute services at both Epsom Hospital and St Helier Hospital:

  • Accident and emergency
  • Consultant led maternity
  • Paediatrics
  • Emergency medicine and surgery
  • Intensive care
  • Cancer centre
  • Coronary care

Proposals from the Epsom and St Helier NHS Trust is for a single facility at a site yet to be identified which will involve a loss of 250 beds.

GMB will be attending the public meeting in Sutton on 19 April in Sutton called by ‘Keep our St Helier Hospital’.

Paul Maloney, GMB Southern Regional Secretary, said:

“The electorate have every right to be angry with the political representation that they are seeing from local elected politicians and local political parties on the crucial issue of our local hospitals.

“They are colluding with the blatant attempt by the chief executive of the Epsom and St Helier NHS Trust to hoodwink the electorate over the closure of the two acute hospitals and replace them with one facility and a loss of 250 acute beds.

“GMB is calling on local politicians like Chris Grayling, Paul Scully, Tom Brake and Siobhan McDonagh to do the job that they were elected to do which is to defend our two acute hospitals.

“There is no way that these politicians or the chief executive of the Epsom and St Helier NHS Trust will be allowed to jump the gun on this and GMB will call them out for giving the impression that the decision to go ahead with a single facility in Sutton is a fait accompli.

“They need to get back to basics on the configuration of acute hospitals in South West London.

“The population of London is projected to grow to 11 million people in the not too distant future.

“There is no way that a growing population can manage with less acute hospitals in South West London than we have now at Kingston, St George’s, Croydon, St Helier and Epsom Hospitals.

“The chief executive Daniel Elkeles needs to be told clearly that the electorate of South West London will not support the proposal to close two acute hospitals and replace them with one facility with a net loss of 250 acute beds.

“The time has come for Chris Grayling, Paul Scully, Tom Brake and Siobhan McDonagh to make this clear to Daniel Elkeles the chief executive of the Epsom and St Helier NHS Trust. They have to stop attempts to hoodwink the electorate over plans to shut down both St Helier and Epsom Hospitals.

“GMB will not accept Sutton and Merton politicians being prepared to argue for a new hospital in Sutton/Merton area while abandoning the electorate in Epsom.  We also want Epsom politicians to call out the Sutton/Merton politicians who want to go it alone.”