Challenge over Chase Farm cuts

Enfield council is to mount a legal challenge over the closure of maternity and A&E units at Chase Farm that David Cameron once vowed to save.

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The fight for Chase Farm Hospital goes on

Doctors in North London backed plans to close Chase Farm Hospital's maternity and A&E departments. The decision means patients will have to reply on North Middlesex and Barnet Hospitals in the future.

If the plans go ahead the hospital will be downgraded before the end of the year - ending almost a decade of uncertainty. But Enfield Council today announced they want to mount a legal bid to stop the closures - claiming they're unlawful. Luke Hanrahan reports.

Chase Farm changes make it 'centre of excellence'

Many people who currently use Chase Farm Hospital will continue to use Chase Farm Hospital, which will still see 200,000-plus patients a year.

The hospital will become the local centre of excellence for planned surgery and antenatal services, as well as outpatient and diagnostic services. It will also have assessment units for children and for older people.

The new urgent care centre at Chase Farm Hospital will still treat many of those who currently use A&E, 365 days a year. There is also a GP-led out-of-hours service for when the centre is closed at night-time.

– Dr Tim Peachey, Barnet and Chase Farm Hospitals NHS Trust

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Timetable of cuts for Chase Farm hospital

  • The decision to close the services was made by members of the Barnet, Enfield and Haringey clinical commissioning groups
  • Maternity and inpatient paediatric services will close on November 20 and the A&E department will shut on December 9
  • Chase Farm will still operate an urgent care centre for minor injuries, burns or illness but this will not remain open overnight

Doctors 'best to decide' services they need for patients

Today the Department of Health said any plans to make changes to hospital services should be based on "sound clinical advice" and show a clear benefit to patients in that area.

Chase Farm Hospital in north London Credit: ITV News

The Department of Health added: "Local healthcare organisations, doctors, nurses and other health professionals, with their knowledge of the patients they serve, are best placed to decide what services they need for patients in their area

"The Health Secretary will be responding to Mr Taylor's letter in due course."

Chase Farm decision 'grave breach' of expectation

For many years the people of Enfield have been assured that improvements to primary care would be in place before the closure of the A&E and maternity services at Chase Farm Hospital.

The CCG's decision today to go ahead without these promises being fulfilled is a grave breach of our residents' legitimate expectations.

These conditions required that a number of new sites were to be developed to provide improved primary care services to the people of Enfield before the A&E and maternity departments could be closed.

– Doug Taylor, Enfield Council leader

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Enfield MP: Strong opposition to A&E changes

Speaking before the vote, Nick de Bois, the MP for Enfield said: "I hope the board are of no doubt that a vast swathe of my constituents are not in favour of this proposal."

Copy of the programme of changes for Chase Farm Credit: ITV News

Tim Peachey, the interim Chief Executive at Barnet & Chase Farm NHS Trust said: "Changes will put health economy ahead in London."

Chase Farm hospital decision

The future of services at Chase Farm hospital will be decided today.

Commissioning Groups in Barnet, Enfield and Haringey will meet to decide whether to cut services at Chase Farm Hospital.

Today's meeting will mark the end of a long campaign for many local people who've relied on Chase Farm's services.

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