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Accident and Emergency Departments

Volume 455: debated on Tuesday 16 January 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the oral answer by the Prime Minister of 13 December 2006, Official Report, column 866, on engagements, if she will list the accident and emergency departments which are undergoing consultation on change. (113018)

This information is not held centrally. However, there may be a number of service reviews, where proposals are either subject to ongoing consultation or subject to consultation in the future, and these may involve some changes to accident and emergency (A and E) facilities.

The national health service has told us that there are no plans to consult on changes to A and E in 12 of the NHS trusts from the list of 29 that the hon. Member claimed were under threat of closure or downgrading in his letter of 30 November to the NHS chief executive, David Nicholson.

The Government will support the NHS on service reconfigurations where clear and compelling cases for change are made. Professor Sir George Alberti’s report “Emergency Access”, published on 5 December 2006, set out that how emergency care is delivered needs to change to ensure that patients get the best care in the right place. The report is available in the Library and can be found at

No substantial changes to A and E facilities will take place without full and proper consultation with patients and the public locally.