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Hospitals (Closure)

Volume 885: debated on Monday 3 February 1975

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asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if she will set out the various stages of the procedure to be followed when it is proposed that a hospital should be closed.

I am reviewing the procedures for closure or change of use of hospitals and other facilities for health care, in the light of recent consultations with health authorities, local authority associations and professional bodies, and in relation to new planning procedures for health and personal social services. As stated in the Consultative Paper "Democracy in the National Health Service", I have made an immediate change which authorises a health authority to proceed with a proposed closure which has been accepted by the Community Health Council. Otherwise, health authorities are at present required to proceed through three stages: informal consultations, formal consultations and submission for my approval.