Letter: Battle for Bart's

Sir: In his report on the future of London's hospitals ("Bart's may still close", 13 January), Jeremy Laurance rightly draws attention to the inexcusable delay by the Government in publishing the recommendations of the London Strategic Review. The report by the independent panel was submitted to ministers in early November, and the uncertainty surrounding the future of world-class teaching hospitals such as Bart's and Guy's must come to an end, for the sake of patients and NHS staff.

If the review panel has not made any specific recommendations on whether Bart's should close or whether Guy's accident and emergency department should stay open, then ministers must make their own decisions in the light of the abundance of evidence available to them. This is a government that prides itself on its ability to make hard choices, and it is time to stop sitting on the fence.

SIMON HUGHES MP

(Southwark North and Bermondsey, Lib Dem)

House of Commons

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