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Photo of Emily Brothers Launching NHS Ballot at Benhill & Belmont GP Practice

Photo of Emily Brothers Launching NHS Ballot at Benhill & Belmont GP Practice

A ballot on the future of St Helier Hospital has been launched today by Emily Brothers, Labour’s Prospective Member of Parliament for Sutton and Cheam. The initiative was launched outside GP Surgeries on Benhill Avenue and Grove Road in Sutton – the centres were leading local commissioners, Chris Elliott and Brendan Hudson practice. Ms Brothers has also written to them to express her concern about the uncertainty surrounding the future of acute hospital provision for patients in Sutton. Ms Brothers said:
“I back the Five-Year Strategy recently published by Epsom and St Helier Hospital NHS Trust to deliver comprehensive and high quality services to local people. It is worrying that Sutton’s Clinical Commissioning Group has failed to give similar support. That must change – an assurance is needed that they intend to continue commissioning services from both Epsom and St Helier sites over the next five years and constructively engage in developing sustainable long term plans for these sites.
“I’m concerned about revelations about a super hospital in South Sutton or somewhere else, which emerged from ‘TrainGate’ when consultants were heard talking about St Helier Hospital’s potential closure. The former Sutton Hospital brownfield site has rightly been earmarked for a new much needed secondary school, affordable housing and developing a life sciences cluster. I want to see long term development on both Epsom and St Helier sites, as they meet the needs of people in Sutton and surrounding areas. I’m open-minded to how that is accomplished, but certain that the voice of local people need to be at the heart of any decision. That’s why I’ve launched a ballot, so local people can cast their vote.”
Writing to Brendan Hudson (Chair) and Chris Elliott (Chief Clinical Officer) of Sutton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and local GP’s themselves, Ms Brothers said:
“I’m encouraged that the board of Epsom and St Helier University Hospital NHS Trust have agreed a five year strategy and are already looking at plans beyond 2020. Do you share my support for the Hospital’s commitment to retain A&E, maternity and paediatric services at St Helier for the next five years?
“I met with Daniel Elkeles, Chief Executive at Epsom and ST Helier Hospital NHS Trust, earlier this week to discuss early thinking around longer term plans for local provision. It seems likely that any longer term provision would need to be delivered on a twin-site basis. This will require substantial investment to ensure local services are fit for purpose. Do you share my view that the Epsom and St Helier sites should be retained and re-developed to secure comprehensive and high quality acute services for patients in Sutton?
“I hope that all interested parties – The Trust, Sutton CCG and Local Authority – will develop a sustainable way forward that will end the decades of speculation over proposal after counter proposal. Whatever may emerge from current discussions between commissioners and providers, I believe that residents should be able to express their view on the future of our local hospital that goes beyond signing a petition.
“You will be aware that Sutton Council is the freehold owner of the St Helier site which is leased to the Hospital Trust. It is legally entitled to conduct a referendum on the hospital’s future. This would Enable the council to represent the views of local people; inform Epsom and St Helier University Hospital NHS Trust on the ‘patient interest’ and any longer term development; as well as sending a signal to Sutton and South West London Clinical Commissioners.
“This Referendum would ensure that everyone knows exactly what local people think about our local hospital.
“That’s why I am today launching a pilot ballot at your surgery proposing the following draft referendum question. Over the coming months I’ll be asking residents around Sutton to vote.”
The question Ms Brothers is posing reads:
‘The current St Helier Hospital site should continue to be the place for the delivery and development of Accident and Emergency, Maternity, Paediatric and other acute hospital provision within the London Borough of Sutton?’
As Emily Brothers goes around the constituency she’ll be asking local people to cast their vote. It is also possible to vote online by visiting:


Photo of Emily Brothers Launching NHS Ballot at Grove GP Practice
Photo of Emily Brothers Launching NHS Ballot at Grove GP Practice

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