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MP calls on hospital trust to apologise to local people as CQC confirm need to make urgent improvements to staffing numbers

February 2, 2012 5:08 PM

Tim and the Lib Dems at WGHFollowing today's announcement that the Care Quality Commission (CQC) has issued a formal warning to University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay Foundation Trust saying it must do more to improve standards of care, Tim Farron MP has called on the trust to apologise to local people, who campaigned against the closure of acute services at Westmorland General Hospital.

The CQC are currently conducting an investigation focussing on the emergency care, after the Royal Lancaster Infirmary failed an unannounced investigation of the Accident & Emergency department just before Christmas. However, in addition to this review, the CQC today announced that they have informed the hospital trust that they must urgently address staffing issues that are currently at "crisis level".

This is yet another concern that has been raised about the trust which is currently undergoing 4 different reviews into maternity services; outpatient services; governance; and emergency care.

Commenting this afternoon Tim said: "I am extremely angry about this latest development as I, along with hundreds of local campaigners, have been warning the trust for years about the lack of capacity at the Royal Lancaster Infirmary, created by the closures at Westmorland General Hospital.

"It is an absolute disgrace that it has taken a CQC 'spot-check' to force the trust to face up to the dreadful consequences of the very wrong decision to close acute services at Westmorland General in 2008.

"Local people who have long campaigned against these closures are now owed an apology."