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South Lakes MP, Tim Farron, has written to the Chief Executives of both NHS Cumbria and NHS North Lancashire to raise his concerns over plans put together by the review team for both trusts, to remove all vascular surgery services from University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust.
A regional review of vascular services across the Northwest has put together the proposals which will centralise services to only three sites at Preston, Blackburn and Carlisle. These sites will be expected to cover the entire geography of Lancashire, Cumbria and in addition parts of Greater Manchester and Southwest Scotland.
These plans would remove services at Lancaster Royal Infirmary, leaving patients across South Cumbria in a very vulnerable situation.
Commenting Tim said: “The plans to remove all vascular surgery from Morecambe Bay is extremely concerning and I am very worried about the risk this might pose to people across the south of Cumbria.
“With at least fifty per cent of all vascular surgery being for urgent and emergency conditions, ensuring short journey times could be the difference between a surgeon being able to save a patient’s limbs or even their lives. By removing services from Lancaster, the Cumbria and North Lancashire NHS trusts would be putting the lives of those who live in more isolated communities, or in difficult geographical locations in unnecessary jeopardy.
“It is absolutely vital that we do all we can to protect our vascular services at Morecambe Bay and I will be doing everything I can to fight these plans.”