Senior councillors and members of the community will be outside the gates of Hammersmith Hospital on Monday lunchtime, to protest at the proposal to reduce the hospital to the status of a minor specialist centre.
Shorn of its A&E Department and many of its other services the hospital which many of us in Shepherd's Bush have relied on for years looks set to be virtually closed off, along with Charing Cross hospital in Fulham. I have been quite critical of our council's initial response to this, which seemed only to really be bothered about Fulham - and with one senior councillor telling me that he thought the case for saving Hammersmith Hospital was "less clear".
Thankfully the council seems to have realised the error of its ways and means to show it by protesting in the Bush. The gathered throng will be outside the main gates at 1.30pm and will be joined by councillor Marcus Ginn, newly promoted Cabinet Member for Community Care, who has this to say:
"Proposals published by NHS North West London last month include closing four of the nine A&E centres in the area and downgrading some hospitals, including Charing Cross, from ‘major’ centres with a wide range of clinical specialisms to ‘local’ hospitals. The NHS preferred option is to shut the A&E at both the borough’s hospitals and the hyper-acute stroke unit at Charing Cross".
"You can read the consultation here: http://www.healthiernorthwestlondon.nhs.uk/have-your-say-0 "
"We would appreciate your support in the fight against the NHS proposals to close these units and are calling on you to help continue to drive the campaign, to bring residents together and unite against this threat to vital local services".
"We are looking for volunteers – in particular, campaign coordinators – to take the lead in the community and help us run the campaign by:
- collecting more signatures for our petitions and help support the campaign – by going door-to-door, at community events, putting one up in your business. You can download one or get people to sign online: www.savecharingcross.com or www.savehammersmith.com.
- attending demonstrations, open days and our public meeting in September and getting as many other local residents to come along too. Sign up now for our e-alerts to keep informed: www.lbhf.gov.uk/newsalerts. Our next event will be at Hammersmith Hospital in Du Cane Road on Monday, July 9, at 1.30pm – we hope you can come along.
- putting up posters in your window at work or at home – you can download one from www.savecharingcross.com or www.savehammersmith.com.
- forwarding on this email to as many people as possible to gather more supporters, and directing them to our website.
- telling us your stories, about how our local hospitals have helped you. We want to show how important our hospitals are. Email us your story (and a JPEG photo if you can) at firstname.lastname@example.org or write to us (with a picture of you) to Save Our Hospitals, Room 39, Hammersmith Town Hall, King Street, London W6 9JU.
- Ask your GP to support us – if you live locally, you can download a postcard from www.savecharingcross.com or www.savehammersmith.com, and you can drop it in at your local surgery. share the message with friends, family and community groups that we stand united and say no to the NHS's proposals.
The bigger and louder our voice, the more likely we are to be heard. The community has fought off similar proposals before and we will do so again".