Legal action planned as NHS closes doors to new patients at East Lothian hospital
Supporters of a small East Lothian hospital that is closing its doors to new patients have instructed Balfour and Manson’s Elaine Motion to consider legal action against the NHS.
Friends of the Edington Hospital in North Berwick were “shocked” when NHS Lothian announced on September 1 that no new patients would be admitted from September 13.
It maintains that no consultation took place on the decision to close to new patients and send them to East Lothian Community Hospital in Haddington.
Mrs Motion was the lead solicitor in the landmark prorogation litigation in which the UK Supreme Court ruled that Boris Johnson’s shutdown of Parliament at the height of the row over Brexit was unlawful.
Friends of the Edington Hospital is “greatly concerned” at the move, which the NHS has said was made “in the face of unprecedented levels of demand”.
Murray Duncanson, chair of Friends of the Edington Hospital, said: ”The way this has been handled without due process in terms of public consultation has been scandalous. We are very disappointed with this decision.
“There has been a cloud hanging over the hospital for some time and we know that whilst staff will be transferred to Roodlands, it does not take into consideration that North Berwick has become an increasingly attractive place for retirement and, with a growing elderly population, it puts even more pressure on that hospital in the years ahead.
“Over 5,000 people have signed our petition and that tells you the depth of feeling and outrage at this decision.”