Maggie Throup MP, Member of Parliament for Erewash has released the following statement regarding Ilkeston Community Hospital and the wider health economy across Erewash:
“Despite continued rumours, I want to categorically reassure the public once again that there are no plans to close Ilkeston Community Hospital. The rumours are nothing more than a deceitful political tactic being pursued by my Labour opponent, backed by her central Party in London, with the expressed intent of scaring our community here in Erewash.
“I am of course aware of the recent changes to the opening hours of the Minor Injuries Unit at the Ilkeston Hospital. I have been personally reassured by the Hospital Trust that this was a wholly strategic decision, rather than a financial one and brings our MIU opening hours into line with those based at Ripley, Buxton and Darley Dale respectively.
“The changes are due to the low number of patients using MIUs between 8pm and 10pm - an average of just five people per hour across all sites, means that, on average, fewer than two people visiting each site per hour between 8pm and 10pm.
“This decision will mean that more staff are available to work during peak times, which is good news for patients.
“I also want to take this opportunity to reiterate my commitment to holding a public meeting in order to give residents the opportunity to question the key decision-makers about local NHS provision here in Erewash going forward.
“Whilst I had planned to have held this meeting by now, due the holiday season I felt it would be more appropriate to wait until early September ensuring as many local residents and key decision makers are able to attend as possible. The intervening weeks will also allow time for more detail to be made available and in the public domain.
“Furthermore, I have been extremely disappointed by the reckless tone of the private lobby firm 38 Degrees, which is determined talk our NHS down, regardless of the facts. This only serves to lower the morale of our hardworking NHS staff which is extremely damaging.
“In my view, these myths designed for purely political purposes only mask the fact that that neither the Labour Party nor their private campaign-arm 38 Degrees can present a credible alternative plan on how they would secure the long-term future of health provision both locally and nationally.
“As both Erewash’s Member of Parliament and a former NHS worker, I wholeheartedly support our Health Service and the work of its dedicated staff, and will always fight for decisions to be made in the best interests of patients locally, regardless of politics.”