Rachel Maclean, MP for Redditch, has written to the Chief Executive of the local Clinical Commissioning Group as she ramps up her effort to ensure the Garden Suite is returned to the Alexandra Hospital.

During the pandemic the chemotherapy services was ‘temporarily’ relocated to Kidderminster Hospital.

However, back in March, bosses from Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust publicly said that, in the summer, they could make the relocation permanent.

Rachel then convened a meeting of the Alex Working Group and told local health bosses that permanently removing the Garden Suite from the Alex would be unacceptable and that ‘temporary must mean temporary.’

Last Monday (May 17th), Rachel launched a petition to demonstrate residents’ support for the chemotherapy service to be brought back to Redditch. The petition has already been signed more than 4,000 times.

And, as Rachel continues to do everything she can to fight for the Garden Suite’s return, she has now written to the Chief Executive of NHS Herefordshire and Worcestershire Clinical Commissioning Group, Simon Trickett. The CCG is responsible for commissioning chemotherapy services in Worcestershire.

In the letter, Rachel expresses concern about the distance her constituents will have to travel for their treatment.

The town’s MP also raised the issue of NHS England’s ‘Standard Contract for Cancer: Chemotherapy’ which makes clear chemotherapy patients should receive the right treatment as “close to home as practicable.”

Rachel made clear in her letter that she doesn’t believe her constituents having to travel to Kidderminster for chemotherapy meets the specification’s “close to home as practicable” principle.

Rachel said:

“I’m leaving no stone unturned in this fight to ensure the Garden Suite is returned to the Alex.

“By writing to Mr Trickett, who commissions chemotherapy services in our county, I wanted to make my opposition clear to any move by the Acute Trust to make the temporary relocation of the Garden Suite a permanent one.

Rachel has also thanked the thousands of people who have already signed her petition.

“Since launching the petition I have been overwhelmed by the emails from constituents who have used or are using the Garden Suite,” Rachel added.

“All of them are opposed to the Garden Suite remaining permanently in Kidderminster. Their messages have only sought to strengthen my determination to fight local health bosses all the way on this issue.

“No one can claim that there isn’t massive support in Redditch to return this service back to our town’s hospital.”

To sign the petition please visit: https://www.change.org/bringbackthegardensuite