HC Deb 11 December 1984 vol 69 cc474-5W
Mr. Ashley

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will request health authorities to inform him of any proposed hospital closures; and if he will require them to ensure before closure that adequate provision is made with new investment if necessary, for the patients normally treated at the hospital.

Mr. Kenneth Clarke

Health authorities are required to consult locally on all proposals for permanent hospital closure, and to notify our Department at the same time. If the community health council does not agree with the proposals, they cannot proceed without reference to Ministers. We consider all such cases very carefully, including details of alternative provision, before making a final decision.