I present a petition signed by 8,713 local residents, including doctors, nurses and other employees who have worked at Harpenden memorial hospital and patients and relatives of patients who have been treated at the hospital, all of whom deplore the proposed closure of beds at the hospital. They say that the relatively small savings achieved by closing the ward are overshadowed by the huge impact on the care provided at the hospital for the most needy, frail, elderly and terminally ill people in the Harpenden area. They say that the closure is a breach of promises made at a public meeting in September 2005 when the people of Harpenden were told by the primary care trust that closing or running down the hospital would be bad for patient care and financially disadvantageous.
The petition states:
The petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urge the Secretary of State for Health to work with the St. Albans and Harpenden Primary Care Trust to ensure that the beds at Harpenden Memorial Hospital are not closed.
And the Petitioners remain, etc.
To lie upon the Table.