Renfrewshire Council

Council Leader calls on Health Secretary to save key services at the area's children's ward.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan has called on Scottish Government Health Secretary Shona Robison to save key services at the area's children's ward.

The Board of NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde today voted to downgrade services at Ward 15 of the Royal Alexandra Hospital (RAH) in Paisley.

If approved by Health Secretary Robison the move would see paediatric inpatient care transferred from the RAH's Ward 15 to the Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow.

Cllr Macmillan - who represents Renfrewshire Council on the regional health board - introduced a motion to keep the services at the much-loved ward, but his proposal was voted down.

He said: "This is a terrible decision by the health board which will have a real impact on many Renfrewshire families. It should be investing in vital local services, not closing them.

"Of course we recognise there is a great facility in Glasgow but the board needs to take account of the feelings of local people, who have been very clear that they want these services to be delivered at Ward 15.

"Around 6,600 people have signed petitions to express their support for Ward 15. They cannot be ignored."

He added: "In 2015 Health Secretary Shona Robison said in the Scottish Parliament that there were no plans to close Ward 15 and she congratulated the staff on their great work.

"We are now hoping she will be true to her word and use her powers to prevent services at this incredibly popular children's ward being taken away from our communities."

The decision taken by the board has to be approved by the health secretary as the closure of the services would amount to a 'major service change'.