A decision not to take seriously ill and injured children by ambulance to an accident and emergency department earmarked for closure is a disgrace, according to the leader of Redbridge Council.
Earlier this month it emerged young patients are not being admitted to King George Hospital in Goodmayes, which is earmarked for closure next year.
Barking , Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals Trust (BHRUT) is ordering children to be taken to a specialist care centre at Queens Hospital in Romford instead.
The move has been criticised by campaigners, including Cllr Andy Walker representing Aldborough ward for Save King George party, who say potential delays in treatment could put patients at risk.
This claim is denied by the trust.
Now Cllr Keith Prince, Conservative leader of Redbridge Council, has criticised the trust for a lack of information.
He said: “I think it is a disgrace.
“We need to look at the medical reasons for why they are doing this. Of course it may be that sometimes it is better that you go another five minutes in an ambulance and get better care.
“But you would have thought they would have explained to us these reasons.
“I am pretty hacked off to be honest.
“We are supposed to be a partnership, and it seems they do not understand the meaning of the word.
“It highlights the issue of closing the A&E and the Conservatives have campaigned against it.
“We are very confident and determined that it will not be allowed it to happen.”
A Care Quality Commission report last year found A&E patients were being put at risk at both BHRUT hospitals due to poor care standards.