Mixed reviews for £500m funding for Epsom and St Helier Hospital Trust

By Emily Garbutt
October 5 2019, 19.45

The government has pledged £500 million of funding to Epsom and St Helier Hospital Trust.

The trust said the money will be spent on refurbishing both Epsom and St Helier Hospitals.

A separate facility dedicated to emergency cases and high-risk patients will also be built at Epsom, St Helier or a new location in Sutton, which will account for 15% of the trust’s services.

Mitcham and Morden MP Siobhain McDonagh (pictured above) said: “These funds will downgrade at least one or both of St Helier and Epsom Hospitals, moving all acute services including major A&E and consultant-led maternity services to a new facility.

“Decades of identical plans indicate that this will be in Belmont – away from those most in need and placing intolerable pressure on nearby St George’s. 

“These latest funds must be spent where they are needed most: improving St Helier on its current site.”

Wimbledon MP Stephen Hammond said: “I am delighted that the government is investing £500 million to improve St Helier Hospital and build a new hospital.”

The money is part of £2.7 billion from the Treasury, which will be split between six hospital trusts including Epsom and St Helier.

This is the largest investment in St Helier Hospital since it was built 80 years ago.

In a statement, the Trust said: “This multi-million pound investment will transform patient care for the 500,000 people who use the Trust’s services, greatly improve the experience of the 6,000 committed staff working in the hospitals and secure a long term and sustainable future for hospital services in our area.”

Chief executive Daniel Elkeles said: “This is incredible news for our patients and staff, and will be of huge benefit to our local communities. 

“For anyone who has been to Epsom or St Helier hospitals recently, it is clear to see that – while our staff work incredibly hard in some difficult conditions – our buildings are just not up to scratch for twenty-first century healthcare and our way of working at the moment is not sustainable forever. 

“This investment will mean that, instead of facing an uncertain future, our acute hospital services can be retained and continue to thrive in our local area.”

The selected trusts will be funded over the next five years to proceed with each of their proposed building plans, according to a statement from the Conservative Party conference.

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