Health Secretary to meet MP over Grantham A&E concerns

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Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt will meet with Grantham MP Nick Boles and a community group leader to hear their concerns about the town’s A&E service.

Boles spoke in the House of Commons on Tuesday, October 11 in a bid to secure a meeting with the Health Secretary to discuss how to resolve the “unacceptable situation” at the hospital.

As previously reported, Grantham A&E has been closed from 6.30pm until 9am since August 17, with United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust (ULHT) claiming that it does not have enough doctors to fill shifts in three departments 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

A campaign group, Fighting 4 Grantham Hospital, was set up in response to the closure, with founder Jody Clark also set to speak at the meeting with Jeremy Hunt.

More than 30 campaigners visited the House of Commons on Monday, October 10, to voice their displeasure at the situation at the hospital.

Last month, around 3,000 people, including Boles, staged a protest march through the streets of Grantham against the overnight closure.

Boles had previously accused ULHT of attempting to “salami slice” the town’s A&E, arguing that it is “the latest chapter in a long running saga of bad management” at the trust.

The trust denied this, and some residents accused Boles himself of “cynically exploiting” the A&E crisis in the town.

Campaigners have also explored ways to challenge the decision by the trust through the courts, with Rosa Curling, human rights solicitor at law firm Leigh Day, claiming that the overnight closure was “unlawful”, with ULHT themselves acknowledging that it hadn’t been a perfect process.

Trust chief executive Jan Sobieraj also admitted in an interview with Lincolnshire Reporter that the changes to Grantham A&E may not be temporary.

An evening service for minor injuries has opened at the hospital since the overnight closure in a bid to address some of the problems caused by the closure.

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