The threat to close “Sunshine Ward” came earlier this year in a NHS review of children’s services across South West London. People feared the proposal would send many more local children now attending Kingston Hospital to St George’s in Tooting instead. That would seriously inconvenience hundreds of local families and undermine the financial viability of any remaining children’s services at Kingston.
Lib Dem Edward Davey MP reacted to the welcome news,
“I was surprised and angry when I first found out about these plans, having successfully fought off plans to close Kingston’s A&E and Maternity Units, this idea came out of the blue.”
Lib Dem Councillor Rebekah Moll, who fought and won the recent Grove ward by-election on this issue said,
“I was shocked when a senior local Conservative said the closure was “inevitable” given how important Sunshine Ward is to local families.”
After the Lib Dem campaign and Edward Davey’s intervention, the NHS review team revised their estimates of how many children would go to the new specialist unit for children at St George’s. Now only the sickest children will be transferred there, with the vast majority of children continuing to be seen at Kingston.
MP Edward Davey continued,
“Commonsense has prevailed and it now looks like we’ve got the best of both worlds. Sunshine ward remains, but there will be better community services when children are discharged and more specialist children’s services on hand than Kingston can currently provide.
Many thanks to the huge number of local people who backed this vital local health campaign.”