SO NOW WE NEED TO GET SERIOUS ABOUT RAISING FUNDS
The NHC’s legal challenge to the Herts Valleys Clinical Commissioning Group (HVCCG) to consider a new A+E hospital on a clear central site in west Hertfordshire has reached a major milestone. This week a High Court judge approved the NHC’s application for judicial review, so it can now go forward for a full hearing. It means there is a case to answer.
We are appealing to local residents, businesses and other organisations to support the campaign to help fund the legal case. A low costs cap has been agreed by the court because it is judged to be a matter of public interest and we have a very favourable arrangement in place with our legal team. We still require to meet our target of £20,000 of which supporters have so far generously donated around a quarter. Donations can be made, anonymously if you wish, via our crowdfunding site here, or direct to our dedicated bank account:
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The NHC, which is a non-political group, claims the new hospital option was dismissed as unaffordable without properly considering the evidence or holding a full public consultation as HVCCG and the West Herts Hospitals Trust (WHHT) were required to do. It also asserts that the health bodies decided on their preferred option without holding the required public consultation.
Their plan involves renewing less than half of the dilapidated buildings and infrastructure at Watford leaving much of the rest classified as not fit for purpose. Very little investment would be made at St. Albans, and Hemel Hempstead would be reduced to a single block for medical support enabling the rest of the estate to be sold off for housing development.
Other hospital redevelopment schemes for which similar funding has also recently been promised, such as Princess Alexandra in Harlow and St. Helier Hospital in Surrey are including new hospital options in public consultation processes.
The hospital in Vicarage Road Watford is in a dire state with much of the estate at end of life. There is major population growth projected including one of only five ‘garden towns’ in the whole country in the area around Hemel Hempstead and St. Albans.
Edie Glatter of the NHC said “We effectively have a once and for all opportunity to secure the new state-of-the-art accessible hospital that we so desperately need. The alternative would mean that we will leave a legacy of poor hospital healthcare facilities for years to come.
The decision to keep the dysfunctional Watford Hospital estate will not be reversed in the foreseeable future if the best part of £400 million is spent on it this time round. Please make a donation and support our legal challenge”.