MP Nick Boles demands answers on A&E from Prime Minister as question asked via text message in House of Commons

Newark MP Robert Jenrick speaks at the hospital protest march in October when Nick Boles MP was unable to attend because of illness.
Newark MP Robert Jenrick speaks at the hospital protest march in October when Nick Boles MP was unable to attend because of illness.
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Grantham MP Nick Boles has been able to ask a question on the House of Commons despite not being able to attend because he is receiving treatment for cancer.

At Prime Minister’s Questions this week Mr Boles was able to ask a question via a text message. Robert Jenrick, the neighbouring MP for Newark, read out the message asking the Prime Minister to offer assurances over the future of Grantham A&E following last week’s publication of the NHS Sustainability and Transformation Plan for Lincolnshire (STP).

Mr Jenrick asked Theresa May to make sure that local voices are heard and to “assure people that they would always have access to safe Emergency Care for themselves and their families”.

As well as wishing Mr Boles a speedy recovery, Mrs May said she recognised the strength of feeling he has about his local hospital alongside newly elected MP for Sleaford and North Hykeham Dr Caroline Johnson who won the by-election last week.

She said that the STP process is all about listening to local people and ensuring that services available are the right ones for the area.

Mr Boles plans to hand in a petition to Downing Street in January that currently has over 40,000 names in support of re-opening the A&E at night, whilst the STP plan will go out to consultation in 2017.

He said: “Ben Bradley, who is acting on my behalf during my illness, met with other Lincolnshire MPs and the Leadership of the Trust last week to get more detail on the STP and to tell them unequivocally that we will not accept any downgrade in services at our A&E.

“In an emergency or accident, what each of us wants is rapid access to urgent care. I got it when I fell ill and the people of Grantham deserve no less!

“I don’t care what labels the NHS use to describe Grantham A&E. They can call it what they like, the name is not important, but I will insist with every fibre of my being that the service offered to local people in an emergency is not downgraded.

“As part of any proposal, if you live in Grantham and have a health scare in the middle of the night you must be able to receive high quality care from a medical team at Grantham Hospital.”