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Ealing Central and Acton MP brands hospital cuts 'unwise and unsafe' following rallies for west London hospitals

Rupa Huq, MP for Ealing Central and Acton, vowed to fight the cuts and closures "all the way"

A west London MP labelled plans to cut 500 beds from Charing Cross and Ealing Hospital as “unwise and unsafe” following rallies against cuts to services .

Rupa Huq MP took to the streets on Saturday (September 30) alongside hundreds of other local residents to defend the two west London hospitals.

The representative for Ealing Central and Acton spoke to getwestlondon after the rallies , vowing to fight the cuts and closures “all the way”.

She said: “With the closed A&Es at Central Middlesex and Hammersmith piling on pressure to Ealing Hospital plus maternity and paediatrics already shut, it’s no wonder that North West London NHS Trust has some of the worst waiting times in the country.

“It's missing target after target for ambulance responses and numerous other indicators," the Labour MP added.

“Make no mistake, the plans I’ve seen as an MP to downgrade Charing Cross and Ealing losing 500 beds are unwise and unsafe, endangering lives to the point that Ealing will be a glorified care home run by GPs.

“We should be improving provision as London’s population heads to a total of 10 million, not slashing services.”

Rupa Huq MP spoke at the rally on Ealing Common(Image: Rupa Huq MP)

Ms Huq took to the stage in Ealing Common on Saturday (September 30) after marches left from Southall Park and Acton Park at 11am.

She was joined by Ealing Council leader Julian Bell , who has previously said west London “won't accept second-rate services”, and MP for Ealing Southall Virendra Sharma .

(Image: Rupa Huq MP)

Hundreds of protesters chanted "no ifs, no buts, no NHS cuts" and held “Save Our Hospitals” banners during the marches.

Ahead of the rally, Councillor Julian Bell said: "To strip out all of the vital services, reduce the number of beds by 80% and still call it a ‘local’ hospital is pure spin and we are not falling for it.

"If these plans go ahead they will leave thousands of people without local access to essential services including A&Es, intensive care, maternity and paediatric units, while those with some chronic conditions will have to travel further for regular treatment."

Protesters gathered in Ealing Common on Saturday (September 30)(Image: Rupa Huq MP)

Ealing Hospital had its maternity services services taken away in July 2015 and a decision to close the blue-light A&E services at the hospital is also expected next year.

While there will be a GP-run Urgent Care Centre at the hospital, residents could face at least a 40-minute journey on public transport to their nearest Accident and Emergency department.

Rupa Huq MP on the march for Ealing Hospital(Image: Rupa Huq MP)

Ealing Hospital would be left with 50 beds, with 500 beds lost across north west London as part of the "Shaping a Healthier Future" proposal.

Hammersmith and Fulham and Ealing councils have launched a petition to protest the plans.

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