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MP secures promise from Minister on mental health ward

October 24, 2007 3:00 PM

Local MP, Tim Farron has received assurances from the Health Minister Ivan Lewis that the mental health ward at Westmorland General Hospital, Ward 4, could not be permanently closed or downgraded without full public consultation. In response to a parliamentary question tabled by Mr Farron, the Minister said that the Trust had a 'responsibility' to consult fully.

In his response, Mr Lewis said:

"National health service organisations currently have a duty to involve and consult patients, the public and their representatives in the planning and development of services, and to consult them on changes to the operation of services"

Responding to this news, Mr Farron said:

"I am pleased to have Ministerial confirmation that Ward 4 could not be closed by the Trust without full consultation. After the mismanagement of the Acute Services Review at Westmorland General, the last thing we need would be another summary closure."