A north London hospital will see its A&E department close and maternity services reduced as part of the Barnet, Enfield and Haringey NHS clinical strategy.
The move comes following recommendations from an Independent Reconfiguration Panel which advocated: ‘centralising A&E on two sites, at Barnet and North Middlesex, as the most appropriate way to deliver safe, sustainable and accessible services’.
Chase Farm hospital’s emergency ward will be replaced with an ‘urgent care centre’ which closes at night. The maternity ward will axe its consultants and become a midwife led unit.
Local campaign group Save Chase Farm has been battling the imminent cutbacks. Two of the group’s angry protesters were elected to Enfield council but were unable to effect the decision.
Founder member Scott Wilkinson is disappointed that local politicians didn’t work harder to prevent the changes. He said: ‘A lot of people in Enfield are very angry that their politicians haven’t done more.’
Health Secretary Alan Johnson approved the BEH strategy and believes the shake-up will benefit patients. ‘I am satisfied that the proposals are in the interests of the local health service and service users,’ he said.