Bridlington Hospital: MP speaks out about ward closure

Sir Greg Knight MP
Sir Greg Knight MP

Bridlington's MP has raised the stripping of services from the town's hospital in the House of Commons today.

Sir Greg Knight said he disagreed with the decision to close Waters Ward, which was announced last week. It had been shut on a temporary basis since the start of October, but managers have said it will now not re-open.

Bridlington Hospital

Bridlington Hospital

The Conservative MP for East Yorkshire said in a statement: "Bridlington Hospital is a grossly underused NHS resource and I find it incredible that a ward closure is proposed whilst over at Scarborough people are working out of porta-cabins.

"I am seeking an urgent meeting with the Chief Executive of the Trust responsible early in the New Year to discuss this worrying situation in further detail."

He said the decision to close Waters Ward went 'against the wishes of many local people'.

Sir Greg added: “I am very concerned about the emerging pattern of unelected health officials seemingly hellbent on stripping services from smaller local hospitals and centralising them at larger hospitals - usually much further away from where people in rural communities live.

"These changes are not driven by a lack of money as the NHS is receiving a record £124bn this year with a further £8bn planned in the next five years."

He raised his concerns in the House of Commons with health secretary Jeremy Hunt earlier today

Sir Greg asked: "Does my right hon. Friend not think it is unfortunate that, at a time when GP services are being sustained, local hospital services in some areas are being reduced? Does he share my concern that some NHS trust managers and clinical commissioning groups seem hellbent on removing valued local services from our smaller hospitals, such as at Driffield and at Bridlington in my constituency?

Mr Hunt replied: "My right hon. Friend has talked to me extensively about this in private, and I fully understand his concerns.

"The Government are increasing funding to the NHS, which involves extra money going both to out-of- hospital services, such as general practice, and to hospital services.

"We expect all areas of the country to find sensible ways for those two sectors to work together."