A&E shake-up plan debated in parliament

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Hospital shake-up plans which could leave the whole of Kirklees with no full A&E department have been debated in parliament.

Batley and Spen’s Jo Cox was among MPs who held a debate on plans to centralise A&E care in Halifax and downgrade Huddersfield’s emergency department.

A public consultation on the plans for Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust was announced after another health trust decided to also downgrade Dewsbury’s A&E to an “urgent care centre”.

Tuesday’s Westminster Hall debate was secured by Colne Valley MP Jason McCartney and included Dewsbury MP Paula Sherriff and Huddersfield’s Barry Sheerman.

Mrs Cox: “The proposed reorganisation, which would leave Huddersfield without an A&E, is being done under the rationale that there will be no change of provision in the other half of Kirklees district.”

She said England’s 11th largest district would be potentially left without a fully-functioning A&E department.

Mrs Cox said: “It seems as though there is a lack of regional oversight about the implications of both this public consultation and what is happening at Dewsbury and District hospital.”

Mrs Cox was worried about the distances patients would have to travel between hospitals. She said there should be a full transport assessment for all the changes to hospital services in Kirklees.

Mrs Cox added: “Many of our constituents are on low incomes and rely on public transport. With congested roads, moving people around is not easy.

“I am not reassured that either trust has looked fully at the transport implications of these reorganisations and what they will mean for our constituents.”