Huppert meets key government ministers over Papworth delay
MP Julian Huppert is to meet key government ministers in a bid to get the Papworth Hospital move to Cambridge back on track.
Julian will discuss the issue today (Tuesday, February 25) with Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander and will meet Health Minister, Daniel Poulter.
He raised the issue in the House of Commons today calling on Dr Poulter to “make sure this move happens to help patients, help development of new treatments and save money”.
“Papworth Hospital is a world-renowned heart and lung hospital and for years has wanted to move to Cambridge,” he said, adding that the move was supported by Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge University, the British Heart Foundation and AstraZeneca among others. “But it has been put on hold yet again.”
Mr Poulter agreed to meet Julian “to talk through his concerns to ensure that local health services are as strong as possible.”
Julian has already raised the issue in a letter to Danny Alexander and will meet him this afternoon to discuss further.
In the letter he said in relation to the delayed move: “Apparently the Treasury is blocking progress, which would be a very serious problem indeed.
“Delay causes very substantial local and national concern as well as being bad for patients and more expensive. I hope that this can be resolved very quickly.”
Later Julian said: “This move is important not only benefiting patients by combining the heart and lung expertise at Papworth with Addenbrooke’s status as a major trauma centre, but also because it would enable both hospitals to share back office functions and would be cheaper to build than any alternative.
“Papworth is a world-renowned unit but is in outdated accommodation. This move has been signed off and now appears to be being blocked at the 11th hour by the Treasury. I am determined to do everything I can to overturn this delay and get this project back on track.”