There must be no more empty promises from Salmond on St John’s future

There must be no more empty promises from Salmond on St John’s future

Commenting after First Minister’s Questions in which Dr Richard Simpson asked Alex Salmond about the future of the paediatrics unit at St Johns, Scottish Labour’s Shadow Minister for Public Health, Dr Richard Simpson MSP, said:

“There must be no more empty promises from the First Minister on the future of St John’s –patients and their families deserve complete honesty and want this problem to be resolved.

“Alex Salmond doesn’t have a good track record when it comes to keeping his promises here: He’s broken his promise to maintain local services, and broken his promise to resolve the situation back in June.

“This whole mess is just another sign that you can’t trust the SNP with Scotland’s health service.”

Speaking afterwards Scottish Labour’s Lothian’s MSP Neil Findlay, said:

“The reports that there is to be a permanent downgrade at St John’s is a shameful kick in the teeth to the people of West Lothian. Providing 24/7 Paediatrics cover at the hospital is a vital element in ensuring St John’s is fit for purpose by providing vital, lifeline, health services to the children of West Lothian”.

“I note the concern expressed by the local SNP MSP’s regarding these reports. I would remind them that they are both Government Ministers and it is their Government that’s in charge of health in Scotland.

“They should be demanding their own government Ministers intervene to prevent this downgrade. The Scottish Government sets the broad overall direction for health in Scotland, a direction which has seen a significant drop in staff across NHS Lothian and wider Scotland”.

“I would call on the Cabinet Secretary for Health to listen to all the concerns expressed and intervene to ensure the St John’s Paediatric wards is fully staffed 24/7. Anything other than that will be seen as a betrayal by the people of West Lothian”.