THE news that the accident and emergency department at the University Hospital of Hartlepool is to close on August 2 is not a surprise.
The A&E department has been restricted to providing care to patients with less serious conditions for the last four years.
But from August 3 these patients will be treated at the doctor and nurse-led One Life Centre in Park Road instead of at the A&E department.
Adults and children who need urgent medical treatment will continue to be taken to The University Hospitals of North Tees, James Cook or to Newcastle, as they have been since 2007.
So the only change is that the non-critical services currently provided at A&E will, from August 3, be provided at the One Life Centre instead.
Geoff Lilley and Keith Fisher inexplicably said that the closure of the A&E department could endanger lives, even though really serious cases have not been treated in our local hospital since 2007.
There is no need for anyone to worry about patients having to visit the One Life Centre instead of the old A&E department which, after an independent review, was found to have facilities which are “unfit for purpose.”