Liberals Democrats are calling on Essex County Council to oppose the downgrading of Broomfield Hospital A&E.

In response to the growing concerns about the crisis facing the NHS, Public Health and Adult Social Care, the Liberal Democrat Group at Essex County Council has tabled a motion to the next meeting of the council on Tuesday.

The motion draws attention to the challenges posed by the Success Regime and Transformation Plan (STPs); the poor performance of most of the NHS hospitals in Essex; time waiting for GP’s appointments and the increasing demands on Adult Social Care.

It further expresses regret that there has been no public debate in the preparation of the STPs, the possible downgrading of the A&E unit at Broomfield and the Government’s failure to adequately fund the increasing demands on the NHS and Public Health.

The council is asked to oppose the downgrading of Broomfield Hospital A&E, play a full part in ongoing health discussions with partners and keep council members fully briefed, and finally to request that the Leader of the Council write to the Health Minister expressing the Lib Dems' concerns.

Leader of the Lib Dem group Cllr Mike Mackrory said: "I am deeply concerned by the suggestion that Broomfield A&E could be downgraded despite the vital service it provides and the prospect of tens of thousands of new houses in mid-Essex whose residents will need good access to the NHS.

"We also need urgent investment in social care to reduce pressure on the NHS. It's shocking the Conservatives completely ignored health and social care in the Chancellor's Autumn Statement last week."