On the 10th anniversary of the Churchill Hospital opening Layla Moran has written to the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Matt Hancock, asking if he will visit it with her in light of the ongoing controversy surrounding PET-CT scanning services in the area. He has to make the final decision over whether to hand the contract to private firm InHealth.
Layla has pressured the Secretary of State to intervene over the procurement process which has led to private firm InHealth being awarded the contract in all but name. She has said the Secretary of State “has to come and see for himself” the excellent PET-CT service offered by the NHS at the Churchill, and speak to residents, patients and doctors about their concerns.
The Lib Dem MP has consistently fought against any privatisation at the Churchill alongside residents and Oxfordshire MPs alike. Layla has been raising their concerns over the controversy and, now it has been referred to the Government, she has said “it’s the least he can do” to visit the hospital.
Commenting Layla Moran said:
“I think it’s absolutely necessary that now the Government can intervene in the process Matt Hancock must meet experts at the Churchill as well as visit patents, doctors and residents about this vital service.
“I do hope that he will accept my invite as so many residents have still been left in the dark on this issue – it is only fair that we should be shining some light on this murky and opaque process.”
The invitation letter is copied below:
I am writing to invite you to join me on a visit to the Churchill Hospital in Oxford to see its world-renowned PET-CT scanning service, which is at risk of privatisation.
By now I’m sure you are aware of the controversy and opacity surrounding NHS England’s procurement process for this service in the Thames Valley area. Thanks to the efforts of doctors, patients and campaigners, the decision to award the tender to InHealth has now been referred to you for a final verdict.
I urge you to take into account the concerns raised by many of my constituents who work at, and use, the facilities at the Churchill. Surgeons involved in treating those with cancer have told me that the hospital has cutting-edge scanners, software, and truly world-leading radiologists. As a result, they run an excellent clinical service (receiving numerous second opinion requests from other NHS trusts) and have a fantastic academic track record allied with Oxford University, publishing genuinely novel and practice-changing research in PET.
The awarding process for this contract has also been a particularly murky and opaque process, and has raised huge questions about accessibility, cost and quality of care. This is no way to treat vulnerable cancer patients.
I, alongside other Oxfordshire MPs, am therefore asking you to step in and provide assurance to the many worried constituents who have filled our post-bags on this issue. Local residents, patients and doctors absolutely deserve clarity, and I am extremely concerned that patient care will suffer as a result of the switch to InHealth.
I urge you to act now and allow the PET-CT scanning service contract to remain in the hands of Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. I also enclose a copy of a letter sent to NHS England last month, regarding the procurement process.
I hope you will accept my invitation to view the scanning service first hand. Please contact my office on firstname.lastname@example.org or 020 7219 3905 to make relevant arrangements.
Many thanks in advance and I look forward to hearing from you.
Layla Moran MP