Telford & Wrekin Councillors vote unanimously to refer FutureFit decision to the Health Secretary
At an emergency meeting of Telford & Wrekin Council, councillors unanimously backed the proposal to make the referral to Rt Hon Matt Hancock MP.
The Council, along with Shropshire Council, has the powers to make the referral as part of its role scrutinising the decision making and the motion to make the referral was proposed by the chair of the Telford & Wrekin’s Health Overview Scrutiny Committee Cllr Andy Burford.
The referral to the Secretary of State will take a few weeks to complete and the Council will inform the area’s two Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), who made the decision to back Future Fit’s Option One, that it is making the referral.
Last month the CCGs backed a plan that would downgrade the 24/7 A&E at the Princess Royal Hospital (PRH) in Telford and move the consultant-led Women & Children’s Centre, opened four years ago at a cost of £28 million, to the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital (RSH). Planned operations will move from the RSH to the PRH.
The Council says that the primary reason for the referral is that it believes the decision will be detrimental to health services in the borough.
Once submitted, the referral will be considered by an independent panel who are then expected to make a recommendation to the Secretary of State.
The referral process is designed to help avoid the need for judicial review – a separate legal process that can challenge decisions about public services such as the NHS.