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Medway Maritime Hospital is at risk of being closed or downgraded, according to Labour, after parliamentary amendment to Care Bill

13 March 2014
by Lizzie Massey

Medway Maritime Hospital is at risk of being closed or downgraded, according to Labour.

An amendment to the Care Bill means if a financially failing trust is put into the hands of administrators, ministers can agree to downgrade its services, and others in the region.

Labour issued a list of 32 hospital trusts across the country which it said could be at risk of being closed or downgraded because of their financial state and Medway was among them.

Medway Maritime Hospital

Medway Maritime Hospital

Cllr Teresa Murray, health spokeswoman for Medway Labour, said: “The NHS staff, from doctors and nurses to support staff, are excellent and work tirelessly to help patients – however they are constantly undermined by a Secretary of State pursuing a top-down, privatisation agenda.

“Clause 119 [the section of the bill amended] will enable Jeremy Hunt to close hospitals when they are in difficulty, rather than helping them to be the community assets they should be.

But Cllr David Brake, in charge of public health for Medway Council, said there was nothing to fear.

Cllr Teresa Murray

Cllr Teresa Murray

He added: “Medway Maritime Hospital recognises it has had problem and decisive, positive action has been taken recently. I’m very confident the hospital will come out of this better because of the work that is being done.

“The issues in regard to Medway are not financial, they are related to the quality of care and standards.

“Like most organisations they are struggling to meet budgets, but I’m convinced that Medway will be okay.”


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