By Harriet Ernstsons Friday 15 March 2013 Updated: 15/03 08:16
DOCTORS in charge of deciding the future of the Alexandra Hospital were called on to focus on people rather than politics.
The plea was made by former mayor Madge Tillsley MBE at the public meeting on Monday (March 11) where she told the panel ‘we are here not because of politics but because of people’.
After hearing the two options were to stay under the control of Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust or transferring the site to University Hospitals Birmingham, Mrs Tillsley said: “May I suggest option three, leave us alone.
“I’m here tonight to support Redditch people, it’s them we care about. People are coming from all over the place using our hospital and our own people can’t get in because of people from Worcester and other places. It’s people that matter not options.”
Residents raised concerns about the maternity service being downgraded to a midwife led unit (MLU), with one man saying how his wife had to have an emergency Caesarean within 15 minutes to save the life of his first-born child in 2011, while another said doctors were ‘condemning babies and even mothers to an early death’.
But Dr Jonathan Wells, chair of the CCG, said: “The harsh reality is we cannot get anyone to provide full obstetrics and gynaecology at the Alex. It is not that we haven’t tried but no one will do it.”
He added people needed to be aware if they chose to give birth at an MLU, it posed the same risks as a home birth if complications arose.
Responding to questions about the lack of capacity at A&E, chief operating officer Simon Hairsnape assured residents added capacity would have to put in to hospitals which would take on cases the Alex would be unable to see following a downgrade.
“Changes would not occur until that capacity was safely in place.”
Coun Rebecca Blake was criticised after speaking up against the Government for saying money should be spent on patients not reorganisation and a ‘lack of political leadership’ had left people’s hopes pinned on Save the Alex.
Chairman Neal Stote said the campaign had remained non-political so everyone could support retaining services at the hospital.
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