Update
Hospital campaigners in 'no confidence' walk out

By Harriet Ernstsons Wednesday 19 December 2012 Updated: 27/12 12:11

CAMPAIGNERS fighting to save services at the Alexandra Hospital have walked out of an NHS board meeting after 'losing confidence' in the review.

Members of the Save the Alex group, who have been campaigning against the closure of vital services such as maternity and A&E, left the meeting in Redditch this morning - telling hospital bosses they had no faith in the Joint Services Review.

It comes after an announcement no decision will be made about the future of acute services until at least next summer.

The JSR, which was set to investigate how Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust could save £50 million, met yesterday (Tuesday) to come to a decision about what services will and will not be provided at the Redditch site.

But a statement released by the group said the options need to be looked at in more detail before they could be released and formal consultation could take place.

It added the JSR had been looking at the clinical and financial sustainability of all options, with a second phase of engagement expected to begin in February will a full three-month consultation starting in the summer of 2013.

Eamonn Kelly, NHS Worcestershire chief executive, said: "We are very conscious that people in Worcestershire are looking to us to confirm the details of the proposals for change and we want to do this as soon as possible.

"It is really important however to have fully explored all of the options than to be constrained by an artificial timetable. That said we do aim to say much more in January 2013 about the detail of the options which we will take to the next stage of public engagement."

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