UKIP’S prospective Parliamentary candidate for Hartlepool has launched a new Facebook campaign aimed at “saving” the University Hospital of Hartlepool.
The Holdforth Road hospital site and the University Hospital of North Tees, in Stockton, are both set to be replaced with the new £300m state-of-the-art hospital at Wynyard.
Officials at the North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust are seeking £100m of Government money towards the cost of the new site, which still has a target opening of 2017.
But Phillip Broughton, UKIP’s prospective parliamentary candidate for Hartlepool, has launched a new campaign aimed at saving the site in town.
Mr Broughton said the campaign – which has so far received support from more than 700 people – has simple aims and the include:
l To keep the Hartlepool hospital at its current site, in Holdforth Road;
l To bring back services that have been removed including accident and emergency services;
l To oppose the proposed closures of the GP services at Hartfields medical practice, Fens medical practice and Wynyard Road Primary Care Centre.
Mr Broughton said: “I have launched this campaign because I’m passionate about the National Health Service.
“I think when we, as a country, are spending £120bn on the health service the least people should expect is to have the safety of having a local hospital with all the basic services.
“I’m going to campaign now as the UKIP PPC (Prospective Parliamentary Candidate) for Hartlepool, and I’ll take the fight to Westminster if I’m elected as Hartlepool’s MP next year in the general election.”
The Mail recently reported that hospital bosses have decided to close their on-site nurseries with around 60 workers at risk of the axe – the loss of another service for the University Hospital of Hartlepool.
It follows the decision to downgrade maternity and children’s services, the closure of the A&E department and the transfer of emergency medical and critical care to North Tees.
The campaign also calls for hospital parking charges to be scrapped and hits out against privatisation.
Mr Broughton added: “We want to scrap the unfair and unnecessary hospital car parking charges.
“The practice of charging patients, visitors and even hospital staff to park their cars at NHS hospitals is a scandalous rip-off and must be brought to an end.
“We will oppose any further moves to push the NHS towards privatisation.”
To join the campaign, which has currently had 767 ‘likes’ on Facebook, visit www.facebook.com/savehartlepoolhospital