Rt Hon Greg Hands MP for Chelsea and Fulham reporting back
Greg Hands MP & Councillor Gerard Hargreaves at the Coronation lunch
June 12, 2023
I hope you are well.
In the House of Commons Chamber on Thursday, 25 May 2023, the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Steve Barclay MP, made a statement on the New Hospital Programme. On multiple occasions he confirmed the commitment for the floor-by-floor refurbishment of Charing Cross Hospital. Which is great news!
The announcement also confirmed more than £20 billion of investment is expected for the NHS estate. As our local Charing Cross Hospital is in the New Hospital Programme, funding is secure for this refurbishment.
However, despite this undeniable reassurance from the Secretary of State for Health, disgraceful rumours have been spreading that the refurbishment of our local hospitals has been scrapped. The local Labour-run Hammersmith & Fulham Council put out a Weekly Briefing on 26 May titled: ‘’Charing Cross Hospital refurbishment scrapped’’.
I would like to categorically state - this is absolutely not true!
Not only is this incorrect, but it is also incredibly misleading. Residents across Fulham & Chelsea use and depend on Charing Cross Hospital and the excellent staff and healthcare that they provide. Spreading this misinformation only leads to confusion and frightens people. You might have seen that Councillor Amanda Lloyd-Harris has written to the Chief Executive of the Council to ask how this was permitted and issue a correction to recipients of the Weekly Briefing. You can read it in full here.
Unfortunately, this is not the first time that Labour have been misleading on Charing Cross Hospital. You may remember that in 2017 it reached such a height that the NHS wrote to the Leader of Hammersmith & Fulham Council disputing the Council’s ‘incorrect and misleading claims’ about the future of our fantastic Charing Cross Hospital.
The letter was from Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust Chief Executive Dr Tracey Batten and North West London Collaboration of Clinical Commissioning Groups Chief Officer Clare Parker, in which they wrote about a leaflet which was circulated with council tax updates to residents:
‘’This material made a number of incorrect and misleading claims about the future of Charing Cross Hospital which is likely to cause significant, unnecessary distress to patients and staff.
As you will be fully aware, there have never been any plans to close Charing Cross Hospital.’’
The letter also raised concerns about the Council choosing to spend public money fighting ‘closure plans’ that do not exist. In addition, the NHS felt it was necessary to raise a formal complaint about it.
At the moment, Labour are yet again making misleading claims about Charing Cross Hospital.
But back to the good news, which for Charing Cross Hospital means:
Following the announcement, I have met Professor Tim Orchard, Chief Executive of Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust to discuss the Trust’s plans and the next steps of the refurbishment of Charing Cross Hospital.
The Secretary of State’s statement is good news for local residents, Charing Cross patients, the excellent staff and healthcare that they provide. Commenting, the Secretary of State for Health said: ‘’After many conversations with Greg, who has been a tireless champion for local hospitals, I am pleased to confirm that the full refurbishment of Charing Cross Hospital, a mix of refurbishment and rebuild at Hammersmith Hospital and the rebuild of St Mary’s will continue. This investment will benefit patients and staff by ensuring the hospitals are fit for the future, and I will continue to work closely with Greg as work progresses.’’
I and my family have used Charing Cross Hospital for more than 30 years, and I know first-hand how important this service is. I am delighted to have helped secure this funding so our hospital can have a floor-by-floor refurbishment and residents can have access to the health care they need.
I will continue to follow developments very closely and would be interested to hear what your views are on this great news and encourage you to contact me via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
I hope you have a great week!
The Rt Hon Greg Hands MP
Member of Parliament for Chelsea and Fulham
P.S. Charing Cross Hospital provides such a vital service to us locally and it would be great to hear what you think about this great news!
You can follow Greg on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram by searching for @GregHands
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