Influx to be nightmare for hospital claims Romford MP

Queen’s Hospital will be struggling to cope with a sudden influx of patients after health bosses gave the go-ahead for the closure of the A&E department and a maternity unit at King George Hospital.

That is the view of Romford MP Andrew Rosindell.

At a meeting at Stratford Town Hall on Wednesday, health bosses agreed proposals by Health For North East London (H4NEL) to close the A&E department and maternity at King George Hospital, Goodmayes, transferring services to Queen’s Hospital in Rom Valley Way, Romford.

Mr Rosindell said: “I think it is going to be detrimental to people in Havering because it will just mean Queen’s Hospital will be chock-a-block, and it’s just going to put much more pressure on Queen’s and make things a lot harder to cope with.”

The decision means that an urgent care centre will be created at King George, which health bosses argue will free up senior, experienced clinicians who will be able to spend more time with patients.

But opponents say that it will stretch resources at the already jam-packed Queen’s Hospital and is bad news for patients in Havering and Redbridge.

Mr Rosindell said: “It’s just going to mean that there will be longer waiting lists and if you think that things at the Queen’s Hospital are already manic, it is all going to be worse when you have people coming over from Redbridge. Now it is going to make life difficult for everybody.”

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The proposals to close the accident and emergency and maternity units at King George was originally announced last year before undergoing consultation with 3,000 residents and organisations.

But a number of councillors in both Havering and Redbridge, who form part of the Joint Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee, protested against the plans and even wrote a strongly worded letter urging decision-makers to change their mind.

Chairman of the Joint Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee, Cllr Lynden Thorpe, said: “If these plans work well then that is good, but we as a committee have serious concerns about the capacity at Queen’s Hospital and their ability to cope with the additional people coming in from Redbridge.”