Monday, December 11, 2017

1) Photo shoot cancelled for today cancelled 2) CCG issue statement on Meadow Court 3) One Place East Statement

1 -The photo shoot today is cancelled due to not enough numbers.

2 - At 14:33 the following email was sent to me by the CCG

Dear Andy
I understand that you have now received the FOI response confirming that the CCG holds no such emails or documents regarding the development/demolition of Meadow Court as we are not aware of any plans. 
You also mention a ‘board member’s’ comments at the governing body meeting on 30 November 2017.  I was at the meeting and cannot recall any member of the CCG governing body making such comments.  I have checked with colleagues and with our company secretary who concur.  You may be aware that non-voting attendees sit at the table also, for example from HealthWatch and the local authority.
I also wanted to advise that the public section of the agenda was placed at the beginning of the meeting, as it has been for similar meetings, so that comments could be heard before consideration of the proposals and decision making.  We have done this following previous feedback from stakeholders, but are happy to hold this at the end of the meeting in future if preferred.
I trust this is helpful. You can publish this email as I welcome the facts being shared with the public.

CCG Director

I understand the person who made the statement calling into the consultation into doubt was a non-voting attendee. An error on my part.

NELFT the NHS trust who own Meadow Court are yet to issue a statement on the issue.

3 Jon Abrams of One Place East has given me the following

"I was shocked at the way in which relatives and carers of loved ones at Meadow Court were treated at the recent CCG Governing Body Meeting. To all extents and purposes, the ‘voice’ of carers and patients were ignored demonstrating a lack of dignity, respect and compassion. 

The Board ignored many of the pertinent questions about the quality of care, health outcomes following relocation, and the standard of local care homes. Even if a transfer is carried out well, there are risks. Minimising ‘transfer trauma’ necessitates an ongoing piece of work involving the whole system.

Dementia patients and older people have human rights too. And the Board's decision to in effect eject dementia patients from their homes is a tragedy."

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Photo shoot 6:15pm Monday 11th December outside Fulwell Well Cross Medical Centre 1 Tomswood Hill, Ilford IG6 2HG

Redbridge Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) voted to close Meadow Court Nursing Home at their meeting on 30th November. The Chair of the CCG is Dr Metha who practices at the Fulwell Cross Medical Centre

A Recorder story including a picture from our recent photo shoot is here Recorder story

The meeting did not follow usual procedure because public questions were at the beginning of the meeting rather than at the end of the meeting. This prevented the public asking questions about what was said the meeting.

During the meeting a board member cast doubt upon whether the consultation was a real one without a predetermined outcome. I tweeted about her comments at the time.

Dyamite statement from board member implying plans exist to sell off meadow court for housing and kept from committee! Vote passed for closure no attempt to answer public questions. Heckles of shamful and disgusting from floor. (apologies for poor spelling)

I have since written to both CCG and NELFT (who own Meadow Court) asking the following:

All documents or emails either within your organisations or to external contractors about the future of Meadow Court regarding the demolition and/or development of Meadow Court dated before 14:15 on 30th November 2017.

An issue I was unable to raise at the end of the meeting due to the change in procedure putting questions at the beginning of the meeting rather than at the end.

Despite some email exchanges on the issue between the NHS and I, the request for information relating to documents regarding documents remains unanswered, although the NHS have written to say no plans exist to sell Meadow Court.

I have set a deadline of 5pm on the 11th December for NELFT and the CCG to answer the above. If they do not say whether they have have any such documents, I will seek legal advice through a crowd funding site to see if any legal challenge can be brought.

We own our NHS and that means reasonable questions about our NHS should be answered by NHS mangers. However, the meeting of the 30th November was altered to prevent reasonable questions being asked about what board members said. I hope the NHS will reply by 5pm this Monday and the photo shoot cancelled.

Should you wish to attend please call me on 07956 263088. We need no more than eight people to make the point. Please be prompt as the surgery is closed between 6pm and 6:30pm and we do not want to inconvenience patients.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Great News: Cllr Athwal to speak at meeting to call for maternity to return to King George Hospital

Delighted to report that Cllr Jas Athwal will speak at a meeting calling for maternity to come back to King George Hospital at 6pm Wednesday 17th January 2018. More details to follow in due course.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Photo shoot today

Thanks you to everyone attending today. The Ilford Recorder and Wanstead and Woodford Guardian will have photos of us in a more orderly state.

The below is a link to a facebook live interview with Bob Archer and Bob Littlewood


Monday, December 4, 2017

Bring your banners for the photo shoot on 5th December

Be much appreciated if political parties, faith groups, trade unions and resident associations could bring banners for the photo shoot tomorrow outside King George Hospital for 1pm.

A good turnout with plenty of banners might help the photo and story get more prominence in local press this week.

Photo Shoot Outside King George Hospital 1pm Tuesday 5th December

The Wanstead and Woodford Guardian have requested that save King George Hospital  (KGH) A&E campaigners meet outside KGH tomorrow at 1pm for a photo for their paper this week to celebrate that NHS managers are no longer working on a plan to close KGH A&E in 2019.

I have spoken to the Ilford Recorder and the East London Enquirer and I expect them to send photographers too.

The battle to save KGH A&E is not yet won. The PWC report calls for a new model of care for North East London to be drawn up by BHRUT.

It the task of campaigners to make sure this new model includes KGH as an acute hospital.

We will be organising a meeting to early in the New Year to call for a mid-wife maternity unit on the KGH site as part of the campaign to help keep KGH as an acute hospital.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

PWC report is big step forward for our campaign but work still to be done

The publication of the PWC report is a step forward for our campaign, but the future of King George A&E is still uncertain. The NHS is now considering new options. It will the task of campaigners to persuade NHS managers and the Government that closing King George A&E is not one of them.

Mike Gapes is right to say in the local press yesterday.

 “What I want to see now is the small print for these proposals. If we still have our A&E what is it going to look like?
“We must ensure it will be able to meet the needs of Redbridge residents.
“This is a step in the right direction, but we’re not there yet.”
Full Recorder article is here Recorder 
And Wanstead and Woodford Guardian here Guardian
I cut and paste the NHS statement below. 


29 November 2017

Update on King George Hospital in Goodmayes

Dear partner/stakeholder,
I wanted to update you on the latest position regarding the A&E department at King George Hospital in Goodmayes. 
As you will know, the decision to replace the A&E with an Urgent Care Centre (UCC) was taken in 2011 and much has changed since then. Our east London population is growing and ageing, demand for NHS services continues to increase, and we face ever-increasing challenges as a healthcare system.
Following on from the recommendations in a strategic review undertaken recently by PWC, which is published on our website, we now need to consider more options for the way we deliver urgent and emergency care across our communities. This will allow us to look at how this care is provided locally, taking these challenges into account.
It is important we consider how we deliver these services across both King George and Queen’s hospitals to enable us to deliver care in the best way for patients. Exploring more options will enable us to do this.
This is now an opportunity for us to work with our clinicians, patients, partners and stakeholders to develop a plan to make it easier for people to access the right services, deliver care sustainably, and address the challenges such as an ageing population and increasing demand on A&E services.
The model we finally adopt must provide excellent, safe patient care and meet the needs of local people now and well into the future. 
In the meantime, the existing A&E at King George hospital will continue to operate as now.
I will continue to keep you updated of further developments.
Kind regards

Jane Milligan
Chief Officer NHS Tower Hamlets CCG and Executive Lead for East London Health and Care Partnership (NEL STP)

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

BHRUT want more than 500 dwellings to be built on King George site

The link BHRUT Build on KGH shows BHRUTs representative, Bidwells writing to Redbridge Council in 2016 urging more than 500 dwellings to be built on the King George site per the quote below.

The policy requires “around” 500 dwellings to be developed across the two sites, but the capacity studies undertaken by BHRUT and NELFT suggest that they may have potential for significantly more development. The policy requirement for “around” 500 dwellings may artificially restrict the contribution that the sites can make to housing delivery. Given that the Council is unable to meet its objectively assessed housing need, even with the Green Belt releases proposed across the Borough, placing an artificial cap on the contribution of sites is unjustified and fails to plan positively for the needs of the Borough. It is therefore unsound. To provide more flexibility and to ensure that the full potential of the sites can be realised following their release from the Green Belt, we contend that the policy should be changed to require “at least” 500 dwellings to be delivered across the two sites. 

The footprint below for building does not include Meadow Court:

However, BHRUT go on to say

The Estates Strategy is set in the context of the wider Health for North East London (Health4NEL) Review and BHRUT's adopted Clinical Strategy. Neither anticipate the development of any surplus land at King George Hospital for new healthcare services in the foreseeable future. Indeed, as a consequence of the changes proposed to local service provision by Health4NEL and the Clinical Strategy, which focus on the transfer of acute care and emergency services to BHRUT’s principal service centre at Queen's Hospital in Romford, a substantial reduction in services located at King George Hospital is anticipated.(my emphasis) ENDs

Hardly a ringing endorsement by BHRUT for KGH having a long term future. Meanwhile a another NHS document the STP plan has the potential need for a new Hospital in NE London due to population growth.

It has to a concern that BHRUT is being driven to lobby for more housing on the site due to under funding.

Meadow Court may not be the building footprint for now, but it may well be one day and should the unit close on Thursday it could bring that day closer.

Monday, November 27, 2017

photo shoot Thursday 30th November 1pm outside Beckett House to say Meadow Court should stay open

Redbridge Clinical Commissioning Group is planning to close Meadow Court Nursing Home on the King George Hospital Site at their meeting at 1:30pm this Thursday.

The photo shoot is at 1pm before the meeting starts at 1;30pm at Beckett House, 2 Ilford Hill IG1 2QX

The Meadow Court closure needs to seen in the context of the Decision Making Business Plan passed in 2011 for the closure of King George A&E which states buildings are to be sold off and housing put on the site. Per the extracts below, click on pics to enlarge

The proposed closure of sterile services at King George and then moving it to Maidstone appear part of the same plan. The Sterile Services campaigners won a three month extension before the decision will be made. How can it be safe to stretch a supply chain so far away from the hospitals that need such vital equipment?

Similarly the arguments for keeping open Meadow Court seem equally compelling. The decision making business case for closing Meadow Court rests on the NHS being unable to take over from Care UK, and the private company fee is too expensive to continue with. This is like saying the police no longer have the expertise to catch criminals and have to rely on companies instead.

The key passages from the decision making case for the CCG meeting on Thursday are

Care UK have reported that they have had very limited success in marketing any of their spare capacity (i.e. the non-block beds and the mothballed beds) to other CCGs and local authorities. This is because other CCGs prefer to place patients into AQP homes which cost £427 less per week while providing an equivalent standard of care.  page 31

Re-provide the contract to NHS management The CCG is unable to take over the direct management of the contract as it is a commissioning organisation and is not registered with the Care Quality Commission to provide services. The transfer of the contract to another NHS organisation would require a procurement to take place. page 31

If there was the will Redbridge CCG could find a way to take over and manage Meadow Court, there is no law saying only corporations can run nursing homes. The use of such a flawed argument makes it clear that the real motivation is to carry out a key part of King George A&E closure plan which is clear the site and sell off land for housing.

Due scrutiny has not taken place as the business case for the Meadow Court closure has not been seen by Councillors. When the King George closure plan was passed it went before councillors for comment before the closure plan was passed. It is puzzle that the same process has not taken place this time.

Cut and paste the links below into your browser to see closure plans for KGH A&E and Meadow Court

There is a lot of stuff on the net claiming that moving elderly people from their care home can shorten life expectancy unless expertly managed.

This was at the top of my search list

The last claims regarding closure. It strikes me that Redbridge Council's health scrutiny committee should be able to check that the thresholds for a safe move will be met as set out below.

These matters have now been explored exhaustively in law. Unless there is evidence that parties clearly depart from accepted good practice in their preparations, consultations and implementation of the relocation of an individual or group of residents, there is unlikely to be justification for further recourse to the courts. The legal process carries an attendant risk of adding to the stress for the residents, their families and care staff involved. Although the health, well-being and interests of individuals should never be overlooked, residents should not be used as pawns in negotiations.

The current position

Practitioners must remain vigilant to prevent irresponsible relocation of vulnerable old people such as occurred in Bury-Rossendale 1973. Examples now exist of remodelled services where good overall outcomes have been achieved with the active involvement of residents and their families [9–15]. Life contains risk at every stage. The very old and frail, and people with dementia, are particularly vulnerable as well as being less able to act effectively as their own advocates. They must therefore be protected. Expert medical advice should be sought when revision of services and movement of groups of older people are contemplated.

Thursday, November 23, 2017

The case for a midwife led maternity unit at King George Hospital

At the last save King George A&E meeting we agreed to campaign for a midwife maternity led unit on the King George site.

I confess as a lay person to not being completely confident of the idea, but was influenced by John Cryer's statement that good public services are local public services.

I attended the monthly meeting of the North London Save our NHS last night and was delighted to get the support of the Doctors in the group for a midwife unit at King George and given evidence as to why it is reasonable to campaign for one.

The Inner North East London Joint Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee met earlier this month and had a detailed presentation on the future of maternity in NE London given to them. The full agenda with maternity at pages 23 to 60 is at the link Agenda

  The following grabbed my attention:

The photo above shows a bid has been made to move births to midwife units with a claim to save money.

The page above makes the claim that low risk women have a  safer birth at a midwife unit. It would be interesting to know why, as the expectation would be that a consultant led unit would be best for all women. The page below shows BHRUT with the most births, this must be expected to rise with all the development in the area.

King George is absent from the paper and an assurance is given that sufficient capacity in the system to cope with extra births. However there must be scope for campaigning for a maternity unit at King George, but it will be difficult as the existing plan for King George is to take units off the site and sell land off for housing.

I was assured last night that the new maternity unit planned for Whipps is not for all Redbridge women.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

A big step forward for the Save King George A&E campaign

The photo below is from earlier today outside King George Hospital. The BHRUT board were asked by me to support the call made by four Councils, Redbridge, Barking and Dagenham, and Waltham Forest for the KGH A&E closure plan to be reviewed by Mr Hunt the Secretary of State for Health. The board declined to do this.

However, the campaign to keep open KGH A&E took a big step forward today with the news that NHS improvement has stepped in to block the closure of Ealing A&E. 

The article is here

With today's BHRUT board meeting hearing a report that A&E demand continues to increase and how at busy periods the hospitals struggle to cope. It seems inconceivable that the closure of KGH A&E in 2019 will be allowed now that the closure of Ealing A&E has been blocked. 

There is a Facebook interview of Cllrs Littlewood and Martin outside the hospital at which will need to be cut and pasted into your browser.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Save King George A&E photo shoot this Wednesday 1st November Midday outside King George Hospital

I wrote the below to all Councillors in four boroughs plugging the photo shoot above. By the way everyone is welcome not just Councillors! 

Dear Barking & Dagenham, Havering, Redbridge & Waltham Forest Councillors

A recent meeting of the Save King George Hospital campaign group decided to call a photo shoot outside King George Hospital this Wednesday 1st November at midday.

BHRUT, the management board of King George and Queens Hospitals meets at King George Hospital on the 1st November commencing at 9am with a scheduled finish time of 11am.

Cllr Athwal, the Leader of Redbridge Council announced on 14th October that he, along with the Leaders of Barking & Dagenham, Havering and Waltham Forest Councils would be writing to Mr Hunt, the Secretary of State for Health, seeking that the planned closure of King George A&E in 2019 be reviewed due to the expanding North East London population.

There are signs that both King George and Queens Hospitals are already buckling under the pressure of not being able to cope with rising patient demand. Local Clinical Groups have been critical of care standards at our hospitals regarding excess death, incorrect cancer diagnosis and never events. An extract from the board papers is at the end of this email, along with some of the press about it (1)

The number of swabs left in patients is especially concerning. The Telegraph claim that for the year end April 22 swabs were left in patients in the whole of England for year ending April 2017 (2). Local CCGs give the impression 3 swabs were left in patients at King George and Queens over an unspecified period which appear far higher than the national average (1)

These lapses in safety are important because the Department of Health has given an assurance that King George A&E would not be shut until Queens was found to be of a high standard (3)

The board will be asked to support the call for the King George A&E closure plan to be reviewed. It would be exceptional for the board to do this, but NHS Chief Executives elsewhere have spoken out lately (4) The photo shoot will hopefully have Councillors from all four boroughs present. I will do a facebook live broadcast in the hope of local media using the broadcast. The BHRUT Trust Secretary has been copied in for any comments the board may wish to make.

It would be much appreciated if you could circulate this email to your contacts.



1 – Extract from Redbridge Clinical Commissioning Group September Board Papers below

Section 2: Operational Quality Improvements and Challenges Provider quality performance improvements and challenges addressed through the CQRM

6.1 BHRUT Mortality Outlier Status. 6.1.1 Since the previous governing body report the quality team supported by CSU contracting colleagues have made it a priority to progress commissioner actions to ensure an improvement in the Trusts mortality rates. We have also sought and been provided with full assurance from the Trust that they will meet all the new reporting requirements stipulated in the National Guidance on Learning from Deaths. The contractual action that the CCG has taken is detailed in the integrated performance report and confirms the contract performance notice remains in place. 146 6.1.2 The CCG continues to be significantly concerned around the Trust’s Mortality Reduction Improvement Plan which was discussed in detail at the Quality & Safety Committee (QSC) in September; that although an improvement plan has been put in place, we are yet to see a reduction in their Summary Hospital-level Mortality Indicator (SHMI) rates. The Trust’s plan included a new mortality improvement programme, new delivery trajectory, mortality reduction programme risk log and their mortality reduction programme governance structure. This provides assurance to the QSC that as the responsible commissioner, we are taking this extremely seriously and it has been escalated to our regulators, NHSE and NSHI. It was noted at the Committee that the [second] mortality reduction programme is a vast improvement in comparison to the previous one, but that the Trust had not provided any explanation for the increase in their SHMI and their Hospital Standardised Mortality Ratio (HMSR) from March 2016. Concerns were raised that almost every action in the improvement plan had the same owner and confirmation was provided to the QSC that has been communicated to the Trust. 6.1.3 The Trust report that early indications from their internally available raw data show that BHRUT’s HSMR level is coming down; however this is not reflected in the nationally available data which has a 6 month reporting lag. It was agreed that a gateway process to review the plan every 2 months will be put in place. Fluctuations in the reported SHMI reflect actions taken 6 months ago, so it was agreed that we should not expect to see an improvement from BHRUT mortality reduction actions until the spring of 2018. 6.1.4 The Committee was in agreement that they were not assured by the documents provided by the Trust. Next steps to be agreed prior to the next Q&SC meeting in October. 6.1.5 The Trust have provided assurance that they have a clinically lead improvement plan in that place that will ensure patients presenting to the emergency departments with pneumonia receive the required care. This plan was developed following the external review of people who died with a diagnosis of pneumonia. The review report has now been shared with commissioners following a formal request.

6.2 BHRUT – Never Events 6.2.1 As previously advised, BHRUT has declared three Never Events related to retained objects during surgery. Following the second Never Event, the Trust commissioned a perioperative review by the Association of Peri-Operative Practice (AfPP). The review was undertaken from 3 to 5 May 2017, and a report summarising the findings and recommendations has been provided to the leadership team of the anaesthetics directorate. This has informed an action plan to ensure a review of processes, quality standards, training and education to ensure the delivery of safe perioperative care. 6.2.2 The serious incident reports have been submitted to the CCG for review; the first was reviewed at the August Serious Incident Panel and the second and third to the September panel. The first report was subject to a number of further information requests prior to the SI Panel, and discussed at length at the SI Panel in August. Our assessment was that there was evidence in the report that the environment in theatres at the time of the incident was not conducive to safe surgery and that there should be further detailed analysis to identify the reasons why staff did not adhere to the swab count policy. The SI Panel also noted that the lessons learned and actions were weak and needed further review by the Trust. The report was not approved, and a revised report is expected for the September SI Panel. 6.2.3 The SI reports have identified a number of issues to be addressed, such as reduced staffing compromising safety; that there was a lack of explicit leadership within the theatre; and that there is no mandatory training for swab counting or formal competency assessments for new and existing theatre staff. However, the actions to prevent recurrence are more statements 147 of intent (such as “there must be adequate staffing throughout every operation in Theatres” which will form part of the internal quality walk around audit). The reports do not consider the pressure that staff are under to cover both elective and emergency surgery, and the lack of leadership from medical staff to ensure that all staff are in attendance at the beginning of the operation, and to support and enable nursing and junior staff to follow the swab counting protocols. There are also concerns that operations are being carried out without a full complement of staff, as staff are leaving the theatre to scrub for emergency operations. It is anticipated that the Trust will provide assurance of the actions in place to prevent these potential care failings happening again when the revised reports are submitted. 6.2.4 Two of the reports indicate that junior staff present during the operations knew that swabs had been retained, but did not feel that they could challenge senior medical staff, which reflects a low safety culture which must be improved on. 6.2.5 The AfPP report states that Anaesthetics do not have any theatre education posts (these posts have not previously existed) and there is not funding for this within the existing theatre staffing establishment. These posts are key to supporting a formal structured induction for new staff and to standardise competency assessments and the delivery of simulation training sessions alongside clinical practice. The report notes the cost pressure and that there is a strategic outline case developed and to be submitted to identify potential funding. If this is not funded by the Trust, there is a risk that junior staff will find themselves in a position whereby they are made responsible for swab counting when they have not receive training nor been competency assessed, and these Never Events could recur. 6.2.6 Challenges to the AfPP report will be made at the CQRM on 11 September, and outstanding concerns will be escalated to the SPR. 6.3 BHRUT -

Delayed and Missed Diagnosis 6.3.1 Over the past few months we have seen an increasing number of serious incidents coming through specifically related to missed or delayed diagnosis for cancer. In addition to the SIs being declared by the Trust the GP Alert system has also recently identified a case of potential clinical harm as a result of delayed reporting and the Trust not acting on the radiology results. 6.3.2 Whilst we have sought and been given assurance that BHRUT are managing this quality risk and have an improvement plan in place for radiology services, at both the external clinical harm review panel and the CQRMs, from the information available the level of risk has now escalated. This has been added to the CCG risk register. 6.3.3 Concerns have also been raised by HM Coroner, which issued a Regulation 28 against the Trust on 10 March 2017 for similar concerns. 6.3.4 Although the Trust has given assurance that they are managing the risk, the level of risk has now escalated which is very concerning. The full details of the serious incidents presented to the Committee in the report and were discussed in detail. JH advised that an unannounced quality visit had taken place and that the Trust had failed to demonstrate their capability in managing their own alerts. 6.3.5 At the next CQRM, the Trust will be giving a presentation on radiology improvements and what their top topics are and following that a discussion will be held with the Trust at the Service Performance Review (SPR) meeting. The Quality and Safety Committee were not assured by this and require evidence as to how robust the Trust’s action plan is. 6.3.6 The QSC considered a detailed paper outlining the details of all the reported never events and have made recommendations for further assurance which will be progressed through the CQRM and SPR.

Below is one of the press reports as a consequence of the CCG report

2 - Is a Telegraph Extract referencing never events

3 – The guarantee given to NE London Residents which should be honoured

4 Examples of senior NHS staff speaking out against cuts – which is what the closure of King George A&E is

Plug for Emergency Department Focus Group on 13th November

Redbridge Council has written the below to me asking me to plug the following event

Dear Mr Walker,

I am writing to bring to your attention a focus group event which is being organised by the BHRUT Emergency Department Scrutiny Working Group, in conjunction with Healthwatch Redbridge, to gather views on the proposed closure of KGH A&E and the provision of emergency and urgent care services, which would inform the findings of a Scrutiny outcome report due to be published at the end of January.

Please see the links below for further details:

Apologies if you have received this information more than once, but I just wanted to ensure that you had been included in the circulation and I would kindly request that you please share the notice below on your blog to enable a diverse range of people to register their interest and attend the event 13 November.

Some suggested wording, if required, is as follows:

Emergency Department Focus Group

Healthwatch Redbridge is currently working in partnership with Redbridge Health Scrutiny Committee to review the proposed closure of KGH A&E and consider the provision of Urgent and Emergency health care services in Redbridge.

A Focus Group event is planned to take place on Monday 13 November from 2.00pm to 4.00pm and if you are interested in attending please click here for more information.

Thank you for your assistance.

Kind regards,

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Photoshoot outside King George Hospital on 1st November at midday

The Save KGH A&E campaign team met yesterday and have called a photoshoot for midday on 1st November outside King George Hospital. The board meet at the hospital that day and the aim is to persuade the board to support the call of four London Boroughs for the closure plan to be  reviewed by Mr Hunt.

A small number of NHS executives have spoken out against cuts recently and it is hoped the board of King George and Queens will speak out too.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Save King George Hospital Meeting 20th October: Midday Redbridge Town Hall

1) Apologies
2) Minutes and Matters arising
3) Discussion of 14th October March  2017 Rally and March.
4) What to do next: Cllr Athwal is in favour of maternity returning to KGH should we organise public meeting on this?
5) Any other business
6) Date of next meeting

Andy Walker 07956 263088

Monday, October 16, 2017

Redbridge no longer stands alone: Report back from Saturday events & video

A big thank you to everyone who helped out on Saturday.

The help of Jag and Colin who helped with the Redbridge part of the stewarding at the last minute was especially welcome.

The video of the Town Hall speeches is at video of Town Hall rally

Redbridge Council wrote to Mr Hunt seeking a review of the decision to close King George A&E in 2015.

Following campaign work, Barking and Dagenham and Havering Councils supported the campaign in September. Cllr Athwal announces at the end of the meeting he will be writing to Mr Hunt calling for a review of the closure decision with three other councils.

The decision of Waltham Forest Council to support the call for a review became public on the day of the rally.

We got a spot on the ITV London news and a screenshot is below.

The Recorder story is here Recorder 

Friday, October 13, 2017

Funding appeal for the march tomorrow

Should you like to make a donation towards the costs please go to,

NHS managers are working on plans to close our A&E in 2019. Queens, the hospital due to take most of the King George patients is struggling to cope with existing demand. The September Redbridge Clinical Commissioning Group has been critical of care at both Queens and King George Hospitals. It is obvious to residents that we need more doctors and nurses in our hospitals not less. The meeting is promoting a request by Redbridge, Havering and Barking & Dagenham Councils to Mr Hunt to review the A&E closure plan due to the increasing NE London population. The £1200 comprises £960 hall hire, £117 banner £45 for leaflets and £21 for high viz jackets plus 5% for site handling fee,

The link Just Giving Page will take you to the page

London ITV News to cover march tomorrow

Delighted to get a call from London ITV earlier: they will be covering the march, subject to the understandable proviso of nothing more newsworthy happening.

So please spread the news about the march to your friends and family and let's hope for a good turnout.

Assemble 11am at Dagenham Central Park for march to Redbridge Town Hall for 3pm

Some campaigners are going direct to town hall and others will be walking part way and getting on the bus, so please don't think you are expected to walk the whole way.

Thanks to Julie, Rita & Jeff

Thank you to Rita, Julie and Jeff for leafleting with me earlier. We got a good reception outside the Town Hall, now we hope for decent weather tomorrow.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Leafleting session today 1pm outside Ilford Town Hall

I will be leafleting for an hour at 1pm outside Redbridge Town Hall for the meeting tomorrow.

If you can help me it would be very welcome.

Andy 07956 263088

Cllr Canal,Leader of Redbridge Conservatives predicts King George A&E will be open for "many years to come"

I copy below a letter from Cllr Canal sent to me earlier today. I hope his prediction is correct, but until an official announcement is made, the campaign must continue. 

Dear Andy,
I was hoping to be with you on Saturday but regret I must extend my apologies as I am attending a family funeral in Liverpool.
I thought it would be helpful to reiterate our position on King George A&E.
As you know, there are no plans to close King George hospital. The hospital will serve the needs of local residents for many decades to come. There are also no plans to reduce the current 24hr opening of the hospital.
The review commissioned by Labour health minister Andy Burnham’s in 2009 did however recommend a downgrading of the site from a full A&E to an urgent care centre.
We have consistently opposed this recommendation. We believe the review as first published was fundamentally flawed, underestimated the demand for services then, and failed to take account of any increase in service demand in future years. In our view a 24 hr 7 day a week King George A&E remains crucial to delivering excellent care to residents across NE London.
The recommendation to downgrade King George A&E was originally supported by the Redbridge CCG. Indeed, without their support for that decision, and their subsequent support for the STP, this option would not be on the table. This was, and is disappointing. Without the support of the relevant CCGs, this proposal would not have taken off.
I am unable to reveal the discussions that have taken place within the BHRUT Emergency Department Working Group this year. Suffice to say that no-one who provided evidence to us this year now supports the original recommendation.
It is clear that not only was the original decision flawed, but the new “facts on the ground” make any downgrading untenable. Extra pressure on other already overstretched resources would have compromised patient safety. The only safe option is a fully functioning 24hr King George A&E.
The formal route to ending this madness is the publication of the Price Waterhouse review. It’s contents confirm the views of residents and councillors. I continue to urge immediate publication of the PW review. It will be the final nail in the coffin for this flawed plan.
In May of this year I said that King George A&E was not closing. I have lobbied extensively to ensure that is the case. Based on both evidence to the working group and my own conversations with senior ministers and civil servants, I will now go further. Not only is it not closing, it will remain open 24hrs a day, seven days a week, and will attract further investment to recent its future for many years to come.
I do not however underestimate the wider challenges to the health economy and health services in Redbridge and North East London. We need to build on the excellent work of our BHRUT ED working group and convene a further working group to look closely at health provision across Redbridge. We need to more effectively work with and hold the CCG to account. We need to more effectively lobby to reduce the funding gap that has existed in Redbridge for over 30 years.
Your campaign, for which I congratulate you, has been an exemplar in cross party work. I hope we can continue to work collaboratively to advance the interests of all residents in Redbridge and beyond.
I hope tomorrow Saturday goes well and reiterate my support to the campaign.
In the meantime, I look forward to formal confirmation of the abandonment of this flawed recommendation, and then working with others to further improve health services for all across Redbridge.

Cllr Paul Canal
Cllr Paul Canal
Bridge Ward Councillor
Leader of the Conservative Group

London Borough of Redbridge 

Friday, October 6, 2017

Leafleting in Romford at 11:30am on South Street Saturday 7th October

There will be a leafleting session promoting the 14th October events at 11:30am led by Susan on South Street opposite Marks and Spencer. All welcome with time to help our hospitals.

Photo from earlier thanks to Bob Archer

Thank you to everyone attending