§ Mr. Blunkett
To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will outline her reasons for endorsing the proposal of the Basingstoke and North Hampshire district health authority to transfer orthopaedic services from Lord Mayor Treloar hospital to Basingstoke district hospital.
§ Mr. Sackville
The proposal arose following the decision of a local health authority to withdraw from 1993 its substantive contract for elective orthopaedic services from Lord Mayor Treloar hospital in order to purchase those same services locally. Without new work from other health authorities, the cost to Basingstoke and North Hampshire district health authority of obtaining the same level of service from Lord Mayor Treloar hospital would increase substantially at the expense of reduced services elsewhere. We gave very careful consideration to the proposal to transfer orthopaedic services from Lord Mayor Treloar hospital to Basingstoke district hospital and to the views of the organisations and individuals who had responded to consultation. In deciding to approve the proposal, we were satisfied that the proposal would enable the district health authority to make better use of its resources in meeting the overall health needs of the local72W population, that the consultation process had been adequate; and that the alternative proposals that had been suggested did not provide a more appropriate option.