West Lancashire MP, Rosie Cooper, is disgusted by the Appointments Commission decision to impose Judith Greensmith as the interim chair of the new Central Lancashire Primary Care Trust. Mrs Greensmith was the former chair of Cheshire and Merseyside Strategic Health Authority until it ceased to exist in July 2006. She led the organisation responsible for overseeing the management of Southport and Ormskirk Hospital Trust.
¡§The Appointments Commission¡¦s decision shows how insensitive, arrogant, and out of touch it is, with what is happening to Health services in West Lancashire. It simply beggars belief that they can appoint someone who has presided over and performance managed a situation in West Lancashire in which we have witnessed:
„X Moving the A&E and ¡¥hot¡¦ services to the Southport site, without resolving the very real access problems for my constituents.
„X Allowing the financial situation to deteriorate year on year until this has now reached a critical stage, which threatens accessible services for my West Lancashire residents.
„X Initially supported the potential merger of Southport and Ormskirk Hospital Trust with Liverpool hospitals including the one which she will potentially chair in the future, and then denying it was an option!
„X Raised hopes of A&E and other services being transferred back to Ormskirk without indicating whether this was a real costed option, serving only to make the population served by the two sites compete against each other in a ¡¥virtual¡¦ competition!¡¨
In her press release Mrs Greensmith says ¡§the people of Central Lancashire deserve the very best health services and that it is the job of the PCT to make sure this is what they get.¡¨
In response Rosie says:
¡§I wholeheartedly agree with that but to make sure we get the best health services we can get in West Lancashire, we need strong leaders in NHS organisations to fight for those services in West Lancashire, not the very person who stood by and let our services drift away in the first place.¡¨
¡§For West Lancashire residents Mrs Greensmith¡¦s past action speaks louder than any words, she didn¡¦t fight for us then why should we believe that as an interim chair she would fight for us now, especially while waiting for her next NHS appointment. I have previously called for an inquiry into how the Cheshire and Merseyside Strategic Health Authority allowed the situation at Southport and Ormskirk Hospital Trust to deteriorate to its current level and renew that call now."
"The people of West Lancashire DESERVE better than this!¡¨
Rosie has written to the Appointments Commissioner for the North West, Mike Taylor, to express her absolute opposition to this appointment because it fails the people of West Lancashire. She has also written to the Secretary of State, Patricia Hewitt and the new Regional Health Authority NHS Northwest.
Central Lancashire Primary Care Trust is the new health organisation that will come into effect on 1 October 2006. It has been created following the amalgamation of Preston, Chorley, South Ribble and West Lancashire Primary Care Trusts. The new PCT will be responsible for commissioning and paying hospitals for the health services they provide for local residents.