FINANCE: The closure of Central Middlesex Hospital accident and emergency department may result in a loss to the trust of around £3.5m.

A report in the North West London Hospitals Trust’s June board papers states: “The overall impact on the trust financial position due to the loss of income from the emergency pathway at CMH and the inability to remove all the associated cost is circa £3.5million, this has been discussed with the commissioners and has driven the transition funding for CMH £10.8m to £14.3m.”

The secretary of state announced in October last year that the A&E at Central Middlesex Hospital would close. This is due to take place in September.

The board report notes that the A&E at Central Middlesex admits between 10 and 32 patients a day. This is significantly less than Northwick Park Hospital which sees around 232 patients and regularly admits 80 patients per day.

There is currently a 24 hour urgent care centre that runs alongside the A&E. This is run by Care UK and this arrangement will continue once the A&E closes.

Brent Clinical Commissioning Group is currently in discussions with Care UK over the contract for the urgent care centre once the A&E closes.

A spokesman for the CCG said it was too early in discussions to confirm what the contract value would be and whether it would increase.

Another 22 beds will be opened at Northwick Park to cope with the surge in demand once CMH closes. However, modelling completed by the trust indicates that Northwick Park still has “a deficit of 74-81 beds; 28 of which are linked to the closure of CMH”.

The report notes that it “would not be safe” if the A&E at Central Middlesex stayed open for anther winter.

It states: “Last winter, weekends were a particular challenge with 60 per cent of shifts across the emergency department and acute medicine being filled by locums; this left the consultant in charge of the shift, but not on site, in a vulnerable position. The clinical teams at CMH, in particular, those who participate in the acute medical take are clear that this would not be safe to maintain for another winter period.”

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