BROMSGROVE campaigners will join a protest in the town calling for a halt to a consultation on the future of Worcestershire's acute hospitals following the death of Callum Cartlidge.
Callum, aged eight, from Redditch, tragically died following a cardiac arrest on Friday, March 3.
He lived just two minutes from the Alexandra Hospital in Redditch but was instead taken to Worcestershire Royal Hospital in Worcester – a journey which took 23 minutes.
Campaigners from It’s Our NHS Worcestershire, which includes representatives from Bromsgrove Against Cuts (BAC), will protest outside Parkside on Market Street on Thursday.
The venue hosts the next meeting of NHS Redditch and Bromsgrove CCG, who are responsible for officially approving the downgrading of the Alex once consultation finishes.
Kevin Greenway of BAC said: “In our judgement, the consultation is flawed and should be suspended as the model of care proposed is not fit for purpose.
“Any changes should be halted pending outcomes of the inquiry into Callum's death. If children are at risk in Redditch, they are in Bromsgrove as well.
“The people of Bromsgrove and Redditch have seen our NHS cut risking lives, causing patients and families to travel further afield and putting staff under terrible pressure.
“This has to be stopped. The towns of Redditch and Bromsgrove need fully resourced, fully staffed, fully functioning A&E, Maternity and Paediatrics at the Alex.”
It has been the policy to take seriously sick children to Worcester since last September.
However, campaigners say the tragic death of Callum has changed the situation and argue that assurances that children in an emergency could be stabilised and resuscitated at the Alex before being transferred elsewhere appear to have been broken.
The group is also urging residents to send letters to the CCG calling for the suspension of the consultation, which runs until March 30.
Templates are available to download from the It's Our NHS Worcestershire Facebook page.
Bromsgrove and Redditch CCG’s meeting is held at Parkside from 9am on March 23, with campaigners meeting outside at 8.30am.
Members of the public attending the meeting have the opportunity to ask the Governing Body questions. Any questions should be submitted by email to firstname.lastname@example.org by Tuesday, March 21.