The strong performance of our A&E departments provides a ‘compelling’ case for keeping both of them open.
That’s the view of local MPs and health campaigners fighting to save Huddersfield’s emergency department which could close under a controversial hospital shake-up.
Both HRI and Calderdale Royal Hospital’s A&E departments received ‘good’ ratings in four out of five categories – although they both received amber ‘requires improvement’ ratings for safety.
Conversely consultant-led birthing services, centralised at Calderdale Royal Hospital (CRH), Halifax, in the last decade, did not perform so well.
The hospital was rated ‘requires improvement’ in four out of five categories, while the midwife-led unit for relatively simple births in Huddersfield received ‘good’ ratings in four out of five criteria.
Colne Valley MP Jason McCartney, whose constituency covers HRI, said: “The report makes a compelling case not to downgrade services and centralise emergency care at Halifax.”
Huddersfield MP Barry Sheerman agreed but added the hospitals and the NHS required more investment.
He said: “People are saying moving stuff to Calderdale is a good idea – that’s not true.
“The A&Es have done well so why close one?
“This report is evidence that both A&Es should be kept open.
“It’s about time the NHS was properly invested in.”
Local NHS campaigner and Holmfirth resident, Terry Hallworth, said: “The report doesn’t highlight the need for change – it highlights the need for more funding.”
But he added: “This will be used as another excuse for the proposed reorganisation.”
Natalie Ratcliffe, Unison and campaign group #HandsOffHRI, praised trust staff.
She said: “The CQC have highlighted areas of outstanding practice which is fantastic feedback for staff...
“It is important to realise how incredibly hard all staff work across the trust and we as a campaign should applaud this.
“CQC reports can be pretty damming sometimes but in the grand scheme of things this is not bad.
“In order to improve we need funding for more staff and to keep our local NHS services public.”