Quite rightly, local residents in Southend want the best possible healthcare provision and judging by the feedback that I get from residents, Southend Hospital is held in high regard.
All manner of misleading statements would appear to be being made at the moment. I have written to the Secretary of State for Health to confirm that no decisions have been reached about the reorganisation of the services which would affect patients attending Southend Hospital at the moment.
I am only too well aware of the strong affection which people have for our local hospital and the way it provides support and help for those who are unwell. I also appreciate the travelling difficulties that affect transport to both Basildon and Broomfield hospitals. It is quite wrong for any person to mislead people about the proposed changes when they are not in possession of the facts. I continue to insist that any changes must be clinically lead, by which I mean they must be proposals supported and promoted by consultants and clinicians generally.