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  1. National

Hunt: Clinical case for change remains

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt said he was clear the clinical case for changes to how children's heart surgery units are run remains, despite today's suspension of plans to close three units.

Speaking to the House of Commons, Mr Hunt said the independent review he instigated, following complaints from units where closure was recommended, still stressed the "case for change."

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NHS England welcomes children's heart unit decision

NHS England welcomed Jeremy Hunt's decision to suspend planned closures of three children's heart surgery units and promised to lead plans to rethink how care can be improved.

Professor Sir Bruce Keogh, Medical Director for NHS England said:

We welcome the review and NHS England will now study its recommendations in full to learn from them. We will institute a new process that recognises the very strong case for redesigning services to meet the demands of the future whilst addressing the legitimate concerns in our local communities.

  1. National

Plans to close children's heart surgery units suspended

Plans to close three children's heart surgery units were suspended by Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt today.

Addressing the House of Commons he said the review was based on "flawed analysis", saying:

The outcome of safe and sustainable review was based on a flawed analysis..and leaves too many questions about sustainability and implementation. This is serious criticism.

I therefore accept their recommendation that the proposals cannot go ahead in their current form, and am suspending the review today.

Another review of heart surgery units expected

ITV News Central, Political Correspondent, Alison MacKenzie understand that the Health Secretary is expected to call for a further review of children's heart surgery units this afternoon.

Last July, the decision was taken to close three of the 10 specialist child heart surgery units in England in a move to streamline paediatric heart services.

Glenfield Hospital in Leicester, Leeds General Infirmary and the Royal Brompton in Chelsea, West London were earmarked for closure.

Campaigners in Leicester had hoped the decision to close the only children's heart surgery unit in the East Midlands would be overturned today but it is likely that Jeremy Hunt will call for further consultation before a final decision is made.

Future of heart unit at Glenfield Hospital

Campaigners say they're expecting a decision on the future of the only children's heart surgery unit in the East Midlands.

The unit at Glenfield Hospital in Leicester has been earmarked for closure - meaning patients would have to travel to Birmingham. A final decision is expected from the Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt soon.

Decision expected on future of heart until at Glenfield Hospital Credit: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

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Child heart surgery unit decisions made last July

Last July, the decision was taken to close three of the 10 specialist child heart surgery units in England in a move to streamline paediatric heart services.

Leeds General Infirmary, Glenfield Hospital in Leicester, and the Royal Brompton in Chelsea, west London were earmarked for closure

The seven hospitals where it was decided surgery on children would continue were:

  • Great Ormond Street in London
  • Evelina Children's Hospital in London
  • Freeman Hospital in Newcastle
  • Birmingham's Children's Hospital
  • Alder Hey Hospital in Liverpool
  • Royal Hospital for Children in Bristol
  • Southampton General Hospital
  1. National

Child heart surgery unit closures review due

The results of a review into the future of children's heart surgery at three hospitals in England is expected to be published later today.

Last year, the NHS revealed plans to end surgery at Leeds General Infirmary, Glenfield Hospital in Leicester and the Royal Brompton in west London.

However, after legal challenges and public opposition to the plans, the Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt ordered the review in October.

The decision to stop heart surgery on children at certain hospitals has been controversial. Credit: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

Toddler dies after being found in Billing Aquadrome lake

A two-year-old girl has died after being found in a lake at Billing Aquadrome earlier this year.

Mandi Munhuwa from Northampton went missing for a short time before being found in the water on the 10th March.

She was taken to Northampton General Hospital before being transferred to Glenfield Hospital for specialist treatment where she died on 10th May.

An inquest and post-mortem examination will be held in due course.

Review into Leicester children's heart surgery unit

Glenfield Hospital in Leicester. Credit: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

A review into the decision to close three children's heart surgery units, including one in Leicester, will be given to the Health Secretary.

Campaigners have been fighting to keep the unit at Glenfield Hospital open and hope this review will secure its future.

More than £6m has been spent on the review into the future of children's heart surgeries which includes Glenfield Hospital in Leicester.

It follows the decision in July to cut the number of hospitals offering surgery for children with heart problems from 11 to seven.

The costs of the review were revealed in a Parliamentary question from Loughborough MP, Stuart Andrew, answered by Health Minister Anna Soubry.

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