What happened to our views?

AFTER saying he had had his last word on the hospital issue, Jim Allan then has another go at Keith Fisher regarding the North Tees & Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust (Mail, December 5), saying “They have the authority to make changes to hospital services after they have consulted widely to gather views from the public and other interested organisations”.

So what happened to the views of the public?

Now let me remind Mr Allan, once again, a report by Lord Darzi into health provision on Teesside, which stated that there was no need for a “single hospital” on Teesside, and recommended that the University Hospitals of North Tees and Hartlepool should be kept open and improvements should be made to the existing services at the two sites, a report accepted by the clinicians, experts, and Hartlepool Borough Councillors.

The cost of the improvements, £40m – the equivalent of just two years’ interest on the PFI money needed for a new “single hospital”.

A hospital the public do not want, which will not be big enough given the extra people from surrounding areas, Sedgefield, etc, not enough car parking spaces.

This will result in the roads surrounding the hospital being gridlocked.

One only has to look at the parking chaos at North Tees and James Cook hospitals to realise this.

Public transport is a joke, resulting in more problems for patients and families which I doubt will ever be sorted without more money being spent by the Trust.

The trust says it needs to make £40m savings over the coming years and then needs to find the £20m interest and £12m a year (£300m divided by 25 years) off the total borrowed.

The money from the sale of the Hartlepool and North Tees sites will go nowhere in helping this, so where will this money come from? More cuts to services?

If this is progress in health matters in the region, heaven help us.

Mike Hanley,

Wethers Nook,