In 2006, I was elected to be the Mayor of Calderdale, in this time I worked closely with the people of Calderdale to raise money for the Special Care Baby Unit in Halifax.
Thanks to the good people of Calderdale we managed to raise £63,500. This money went to helping children in the unit that had been born with specific medical needs; some of these babies were just 26 weeks old.
Some of these babies had to be transferred to Leeds Children’s Heart Centre, and to other centres in the region for other medical reasons. Having heard the judgement from the high court that this centre in Leeds is safe, it’s a shame when we have civil servants and ministers that think they know better than clinicians.
So why should we have them transferred to Newcastle, or Liverpool for this sort of treatment.
We have one NHS so why anyone thinks we need to transfer these children so far for the specialist treatment they need, when we have competent surgeons in this area.
We are the biggest county in England and deserve a specialist centre in this region. I don’t know the stress that this must put upon parents, and the babies and little children as it is.
We do seem to have too many chiefs and not enough Indians in the NHS. Bigger is not always best, particularly when you are talking about the care of very sick children.
We really do need to make sure they receive the best medical treatment we can provide.
So we all need to make our voices heard, regarding this vital facility for families in Calderdale. No one knows when they may need this service.
Yes unfortunately, some children may not survive, but I think it is our duty to ensure that these children are given the best chance we can give them without having to travel for up to two and a half hours.