Sutton MPs ballot doctors on St Helier

Tom Brake and Paul Burstow are contacting all Sutton's GPs to encourage them to take part in a secret ballot on proposals to downgrade St Helier Hospital.

Sutton's Liberal Democrat MPs are asking the GPs whether they favour plans to remove A&E and maternity services from St Helier or whether they support a separate process run by Sutton's Clinical Commissioning Group to decide the future of the hospital.

The move follows months of campaigning by the two MPs, patients and residents opposed to the 'Better Services, Better Value' plans.

Tom Brake, MP for Carshalton and Wallington, commented:

"It is unfair to ask staff and patients to continue coping with this uncertainty. The interests of patients must come first and the £219m investment in our local hospital delivered.

"We encourage people in Sutton to ask their GP what they think about plans to close the Accident and Emergency and send patients to Tooting, Kingston or Croydon instead."

"If we can show that local GPs do not back these proposals, our hand against BSBV will be even stronger."

Sutton and Cheam MP Paul Burstow said:

"Recently, Sutton's GPs voted to send the proposals to downgrade St Helier out to public consultation. Better Services, Better Value have taken this as endorsement for their views when this is not necessarily the case.

"Many of the doctors I have spoken to agree with me that these plans are outrageous, but we also want people to have their input."

"It is only right that the doctors who will have to deal with the fallout from these plans have their say, especially as the plans presume a level of provision in the community which simply doesn't exist. Our secret ballot, counted by the Council, will make sure that they can do so in confidence."

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