"Close Lewisham A&E" plan sent to Health Secretary - UPDATE: QT protest planned

The recommendation to close Lewisham A&E was submitted to the Health Secretary today. The Evening Standard reports:

A London hospital has moved closer to losing its highly-praised accident and emergency department despite an outcry from clinicians and patients and a 15,000-strong protest march.

NHS administrator Matthew Kershaw today refused to withdraw a proposal to axe Lewisham hospital’s casualty unit.

It will now be up to Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt to decide next month whether to accept his recommendations to shake-up the care provided by a number of hospitals in south-east London over the next three years.

This government says believes that market forces can help to bring greater discipline to public services, so let's see if Jeremy Hunt is willing to let a well-run hospital lose out because of the failings of a poorly-run trust. Closing Lewisham Hospital A&E would be a moral hazard in more than one sense.

UPDATE: On Twitter, Tessa Jowell MP (pressing for reassurances that Kings College A&E will be safeguarded) says of the Lewisham plan: "Jeremy Hunt is seeking further legal advice. @andyburnhammp has asked for this to be published. I support @andyburnhammp broader position that Lewisham Hospital is outside the remit of TSA terms of reference."

UPDATE: There will be a protest about the threatened closure at the recording of BBC One's Question Time tomorrow, which is taking place at Goldsmiths tomorrow. Meet at the Richard Hoggart Building from 17:30.