Furious campaigners fighting for the full reinstatement of Grantham A&E have said they will be taking legal advice over the decision by health bosses not to open the department overnight.
United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust confirmed that the A&E would not reopen at night at its board meeting in Sleaford on Friday, December 15.
The opening hours will remain from 8am to 6.30pm.
ULHT had said that they hoped to reopen the department they closed overnight in August 2016 after recruiting the required number of middle grade doctors.
However, a safety review conducted by the East of England Clinical Senate and commissioned by NHS Improvement recommended that the department is not reopened overnight at this time.
Speaking after the decision, Melissa Darcey from Fighting 4 Life Lincolnshire said she was “disgusted”.
She told Lincolnshire Reporter: “The ULHT board was offered a compromise to defer the decision for another month and they didn’t even have the decency to do that in order to give chance for this review to be scrutinised.
“Fighting 4 Life Lincolnshire will be teaming up with SOS Grantham to look at legal advice.”
Jody Clark, founder of the separate Fighting 4 Grantham Hospital campaign group, said the news was upsetting.
She said: “We have been campaigning tirelessly for the past 16 months and feel like our concerns are being ignored.
“Regardless of today’s outcome Fighting 4 Grantham Hospital will continue to fight for our overnight service to be reinstated as soon as possible.
“Too many vulnerable people depend on Grantham A&E.
“I’m just devastated that we haven’t had a better outcome today.”
Grantham and Stamford MP Nick Boles added: “I am bitterly disappointed by ULHT’s decision not to reopen Grantham A&E at night.
“I will not let matters rest here.
“Securing the future of this service will be my top priority in 2018.”