Labour Party activists and councillors from Penzance Town Council handed in two petitions with 1000 signatures each from local residents today, demanding that West Cornwall Hospital be protected.
It had been arranged for Jim McKenna, Chair of Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust (RCHT) – to receive the petitions this afternoon and then meet with the councillors and activists to hear their concerns. RCHT operate Treliske, St Michaels in Hayle and West Cornwall.
But when the time came, Jim had seemingly developed a sudden case of Acute shyness..
One petition demanded a reassurance that West Cornwall hospital will not be downgraded from it’s current Acute Hospital status, with it’s accompanying facilities and staff, to a Community hospital with far less available for local residents.
Penzance Town Council has also recently passed a motion requesting the same assurance from Mr Mckenna, who until recently was a councillor himself.
The other petition was a more general, national one to stop further privatisation in the NHS.
Cornwall Councillor Cornelius Olivier was sure that only yesterday Jim had agreed to meet him out front first, so that a picture could be taken, before the formal half hour meeting inside.
Paul Sylvester, Manager of West Cornwall Hospital was sent down to say that Jim didn’t remember it like that and he wouldn’t be coming down for a photo after all. It would be more constructive just to join him in the meeting room.
It wasn’t cause we were there was it? Is protecting West Cornwall hospital from a downgrade something he can’t commit to?
The petition signatures, Cornelius told us, had been gathered in one single day in Penzance, St Ives and Helston and had ‘easily’ attracted a 1000 signatures.
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