Statement from Healthwatch Lancashire regarding Chorley Emergency Department

23rd May 2016

Healthwatch Lancashire is committed to being independent and ensuring that people in Lancashire have their say on health and social care services. This includes giving people the opportunity to be heard about the Chorley Emergency Department.

On Saturday 21st May 2016, Healthwatch Lancashire Chair Mike Wedgeworth, appeared on BBC News discussing the changes to Chorley Emergency Department. Only a short clip of the comments was included in the news story.

Mike Wedgeworth adds: “I told the interviewer that I was impressed with the turnout on Saturday, and took the opportunity to speak to many of those present, including the Member of Parliament and the Leader of Chorley Borough Council. It is clear that we are on largely the same page, except that I see the problem as caused by a serious national shortage of skilled clinicians and that the Trust is doing all it can to find staff to safely re-open the Emergency Department.”

“Healthwatch Lancashire will continue to support those who are passionately urging the reopening of Chorley A&E and has independently sought and will continue to listen to people’s views and experiences regarding the changes there. Healthwatch Lancashire continues to make sure these are heard by Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust without fear or favour.”

“Since the announcement of the closure, Healthwatch Lancashire has held two meetings with senior officials, including Chief Executive Karen Partington. At these meetings we have independently challenged the reasons for the closure and how it has been communicated. The statement released on Thursday 19th May was designed to inform the public of the response from Karen Partington, the Chief Executive.”

On 19th April 2016, Healthwatch Lancashire published a statement from Mike Wedgeworth stating that the crucial questions regarding the closure are “What do patients think about it?” and “How do they feel they are likely to be affected?” The statement requested members of the public to share their views and stories.

On Friday 20th May, Healthwatch Lancashire requested information from NHS England regarding the impact increasing trends and attendance in relation to ambulance, primary care and walk-in services in Lancashire in addition to any information on the impact on other hospital trusts and primary care services in Lancashire.

Healthwatch Lancashire thanks those who shared their views about the news item and the statement made by Mike Wedgeworth on social media and by email this weekend. Healthwatch Lancashire will request a response from Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, NHS England and North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust, Greater Preston Clinical Commissioning Group and Chorley and South Ribble Clinical Commissioning Group to a number of points raised by members of the public in relation to the temporary closure of Chorley Emergency Department. Their responses will be shared with the public through the Healthwatch Lancashire website.

Healthwatch Lancashire is continuing to engage with members of the public in Chorley, South Ribble and Preston about their views and experiences and will be speaking to those using Royal Preston Hospital Emergency Department and Chorley Urgent Care Centre and will share the findings with the public and the trust.

Sheralee Turner-Birchall, Chief Officer, met with representatives of the ‘Protect Chorley From Cuts and Privatisation’ Facebook group on Monday 23rd May.

Healthwatch Lancashire received this correspondence from Karen Partington on 19th May following a meeting on 17th May. Click here to download



To share your views about Chorley Emergency Department please share your comments using the form below. These will be shared with the leaders of the Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Greater Preston Clinical Commissioning Group and Chorley and South Ribble Clinical Commissioning Group. Responses will be shared with members of the public:

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