Responding to the London North West Trust Board decision last night to force ambulances to request permission before taking patients to Northwick Park hospital, London Assembly Labour’s Health Spokesperson Dr Onkar Sahota said:
“This move makes clear that the A&E department at Northwick Park is spiralling into crisis as a result of the strain caused by the closure of nearby Central Middlesex and Ealing A&Es.
“With demand for services increasing at the same time as dramatic cuts it is no surprise we have got to this point. The action taken yesterday by the London North West Trust Board is a desperate cry for help from an A&E department which cannot cope.
"This situation has all the ingredients of a ‘major incident’ like the one recently declared by the CQC at Colchester Hospital when the hospital's A&E Department could not cope.
“For the Government to allow the situation to degrade to the point that an A&E unit can’t accept ambulances is disgraceful. Despite consistent warnings the Health Secretary has refused to recognise the devastating impact these closures have had and seems in complete denial about the danger patients are being put in as a result.”