South Shields MP’s NHS warning ahead of rally for health service

South Shields MP Emma Lewell-Buck
South Shields MP Emma Lewell-Buck

South Shields MP Emma Lewell-Buck is warning people to think again if they believe their local hospital is safe from Government cuts.

Mrs Lewell-Buck’s warning comes ahead of a march and rally for the NHS in Newcastle on Saturday, where she will speak on the threat to the NHS.

The rally will see health campaign groups, trade unions and political parties are joining forces with Keep Our NHS Public North East and North East People’s Assembly Against Austerity to call for and an end to cuts, closures and privatisation.

It will take place on Saturday at Grey’s Monument at noon.

Mrs Lewell-Buck said: “It is something that the Government are pushing across hospitals in the North East and across the country.

”In am trying to get the message out that if your hospital is currently safe then it won’t be for long. Services in South Tyneside are going to Sunderland. It is part of a government plan to shut down the NHS all together.

“It is not about improving the NHS, it’s about taking it to breaking point so that all that is left is private providers.”

Dr David Hambleton, chief executive officer at South Tyneside Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “We have made it very clear that stroke, maternity and children’s emergency services in South Tyneside and Sunderland are vulnerable because of a shortage of medical staff resulting in service continuity, quality and financial pressures.

“Our first duty of care is that we provide safe and high quality services. If we did not act to protect these fragile services, it is extremely likely that we could compromise the safety of patients in our care and lead to unplanned closures of services under crisis circumstances, in order to keep patients safe.”