Sutton and Cheam MP Paul Burstow defends clause 119 vote

Sutton Guardian: Paul Burstow with Carshalton and Wallington MP Tom Brake outside St Helier Hospital Paul Burstow with Carshalton and Wallington MP Tom Brake outside St Helier Hospital

Sutton and Cheam MP Paul Burstow has defended his decision to back a controversial Government reforms campaigners fear could threaten St Helier hospital.

Mr Burstow voted in favour of clause 119 - a reform to the care bill that gives the health secretary the power to close underperforming hospitals - in the House of Commons on Tuesday.

Although he did secure an amendment to the bill that means clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) - made up of local GPs - will be consulted prior to any action and he will chair a steering group that will give guidance to CCGs and patients groups where hospitals are under threat.

Clause 119, dubbed the hospital closure clause, has been widely criticised by rival politicians and coalition MPs were believed to be considering a rebellion until Mr Burstow made his amendments.

Protesters gathered in Sutton on Sunday to voice their disapproval to the plans amid fears it could increase the threat to Sutton's St Helier hospital, which already faces an uncertain future amid planned Government cuts.

But Mr Bustow said concerns about the clause have been exaggerated by rival politicians. He said: "This clause will only come into play when a hospital goes belly up and can't pay its bills. Once everything else has been done to try to fix the problem, so when they've special measures, help from outside management and more, this clause will be triggered.

"I moved the amendment because I had some concerns about the safeguards in place to make sure CCGs were involved and that there wasn't enough emphasis on given to the public so we got provisions for [patients' group]HealthWatch to be involved and local councils.

"This is a slight change to measures the last Labour government brought in but they don't want to paint it that way."

The clause was written after Jeremy Hunt's decision to close Lewisham hospital last year was overturned by the court of appeal because it deemed it out of his jurisdiction.

Emily Brothers, the Labour party's candidate against Mr Burstow in Sutton and Cheam, said: "Instead of standing up for local people and doctors, Mr Burstow has contrived with the Government to centralise power, taking it away from residents and commissioners in Sutton and Cheam.

"The down-grading or closure of St Helier Hospital will now be so much easier, due to Mr Burstow contriving to take power from local people and commissioners."


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Comments (15)

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10:21am Thu 13 Mar 14

Forty_two says...

I for one will remember how Mr Burstow voted on this. Absolutely disgusted with his behaviour.

"Consulting" the local CCG is of little to no value, especially when it was our local CCGs who set up BSBV in the first place... they're hardly going to do anything to protect our local hospital, they've already shown that they intend to close down the bulk of the services which are offered at St. Helier.

I note also that the care bill removes the Care Quality Commission's oversight of CCGs - so nobody is watching what they're up to.

Thanks Mr Burstow, you've just made my mind up who I WON'T be voting for in the forthcoming local and general elections.

If anyone is interested in the campaign to Keep Our St Helier Hospital (KOSHH), please come along to the public meeting tonight (Thursday the 13th of March) at Merton Civic Centre, 7:30pm.
I for one will remember how Mr Burstow voted on this. Absolutely disgusted with his behaviour. "Consulting" the local CCG is of little to no value, especially when it was our local CCGs who set up BSBV in the first place... they're hardly going to do anything to protect our local hospital, they've already shown that they intend to close down the bulk of the services which are offered at St. Helier. I note also that the care bill removes the Care Quality Commission's oversight of CCGs - so nobody is watching what they're up to. Thanks Mr Burstow, you've just made my mind up who I WON'T be voting for in the forthcoming local and general elections. If anyone is interested in the campaign to Keep Our St Helier Hospital (KOSHH), please come along to the public meeting tonight (Thursday the 13th of March) at Merton Civic Centre, 7:30pm. Forty_two
  • Score: 24

10:25am Thu 13 Mar 14

Niki R says...

Absolutely unbelievable. Thousands- no, millions of voices against this and still he thinks it's defensible. Deluded, him and Brake both.
Absolutely unbelievable. Thousands- no, millions of voices against this and still he thinks it's defensible. Deluded, him and Brake both. Niki R
  • Score: 23

11:01am Thu 13 Mar 14

quizzfizz says...

I'm disgusted too. Paul Burstow actually tabled an amendment to improve this dangerous clause and then withdrew it when he was offered a job chairing a committee! First he sold all the Lib Dem principles about the NHS down the river for a job as a junior health minister, now he votes through a clause which will seriously threatens St Helier for another government job. It seems like he will do anything for a whiff of power.
I'm disgusted too. Paul Burstow actually tabled an amendment to improve this dangerous clause and then withdrew it when he was offered a job chairing a committee! First he sold all the Lib Dem principles about the NHS down the river for a job as a junior health minister, now he votes through a clause which will seriously threatens St Helier for another government job. It seems like he will do anything for a whiff of power. quizzfizz
  • Score: 22

11:51am Thu 13 Mar 14

Giles C says...

quizzfizz wrote:
I'm disgusted too. Paul Burstow actually tabled an amendment to improve this dangerous clause and then withdrew it when he was offered a job chairing a committee! First he sold all the Lib Dem principles about the NHS down the river for a job as a junior health minister, now he votes through a clause which will seriously threatens St Helier for another government job. It seems like he will do anything for a whiff of power.
This only really matters to Burstow if people like you voted for him in the past...
If you didnt why should he care.. So to all posting here i ask the question did you vote for Burstow before?
[quote][p][bold]quizzfizz[/bold] wrote: I'm disgusted too. Paul Burstow actually tabled an amendment to improve this dangerous clause and then withdrew it when he was offered a job chairing a committee! First he sold all the Lib Dem principles about the NHS down the river for a job as a junior health minister, now he votes through a clause which will seriously threatens St Helier for another government job. It seems like he will do anything for a whiff of power.[/p][/quote]This only really matters to Burstow if people like you voted for him in the past... If you didnt why should he care.. So to all posting here i ask the question did you vote for Burstow before? Giles C
  • Score: 13

12:41pm Thu 13 Mar 14

mr-bjp says...

Never trust an MP. They're all in for THEIR benefit and what they can gain from it. Our needs come second.
Never trust an MP. They're all in for THEIR benefit and what they can gain from it. Our needs come second. mr-bjp
  • Score: 9

1:23pm Thu 13 Mar 14

David7 says...

Just needs one word... liar.
Just needs one word... liar. David7
  • Score: 11

3:01pm Thu 13 Mar 14

LiberalsOut says...

Giles C wrote:
quizzfizz wrote:
I'm disgusted too. Paul Burstow actually tabled an amendment to improve this dangerous clause and then withdrew it when he was offered a job chairing a committee! First he sold all the Lib Dem principles about the NHS down the river for a job as a junior health minister, now he votes through a clause which will seriously threatens St Helier for another government job. It seems like he will do anything for a whiff of power.
This only really matters to Burstow if people like you voted for him in the past...
If you didnt why should he care.. So to all posting here i ask the question did you vote for Burstow before?
I never had and never could vote Lib Dem
I find them even worse than the Labour Party
[quote][p][bold]Giles C[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]quizzfizz[/bold] wrote: I'm disgusted too. Paul Burstow actually tabled an amendment to improve this dangerous clause and then withdrew it when he was offered a job chairing a committee! First he sold all the Lib Dem principles about the NHS down the river for a job as a junior health minister, now he votes through a clause which will seriously threatens St Helier for another government job. It seems like he will do anything for a whiff of power.[/p][/quote]This only really matters to Burstow if people like you voted for him in the past... If you didnt why should he care.. So to all posting here i ask the question did you vote for Burstow before?[/p][/quote]I never had and never could vote Lib Dem I find them even worse than the Labour Party LiberalsOut
  • Score: 2

3:02pm Thu 13 Mar 14

LiberalsOut says...

I hope neither if them dares show their face at any meetings or protest to save St Helier
I hope neither if them dares show their face at any meetings or protest to save St Helier LiberalsOut
  • Score: 10

4:26pm Thu 13 Mar 14

quizzfizz says...

Giles C wrote:
quizzfizz wrote:
I'm disgusted too. Paul Burstow actually tabled an amendment to improve this dangerous clause and then withdrew it when he was offered a job chairing a committee! First he sold all the Lib Dem principles about the NHS down the river for a job as a junior health minister, now he votes through a clause which will seriously threatens St Helier for another government job. It seems like he will do anything for a whiff of power.
This only really matters to Burstow if people like you voted for him in the past...
If you didnt why should he care.. So to all posting here i ask the question did you vote for Burstow before?
Unfortunately yes. But I'm not making that mistake again!
[quote][p][bold]Giles C[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]quizzfizz[/bold] wrote: I'm disgusted too. Paul Burstow actually tabled an amendment to improve this dangerous clause and then withdrew it when he was offered a job chairing a committee! First he sold all the Lib Dem principles about the NHS down the river for a job as a junior health minister, now he votes through a clause which will seriously threatens St Helier for another government job. It seems like he will do anything for a whiff of power.[/p][/quote]This only really matters to Burstow if people like you voted for him in the past... If you didnt why should he care.. So to all posting here i ask the question did you vote for Burstow before?[/p][/quote]Unfortunately yes. But I'm not making that mistake again! quizzfizz
  • Score: 7

8:56pm Thu 13 Mar 14

The Cardinal says...

Removing the political perspective, these dishonourable MP's have shown what liars and greedy for power hypocrites they are.

If and when they show they photo-opportunity faces at St Helier then they should be asked to leave.
Removing the political perspective, these dishonourable MP's have shown what liars and greedy for power hypocrites they are. If and when they show they photo-opportunity faces at St Helier then they should be asked to leave. The Cardinal
  • Score: 8

10:02pm Thu 13 Mar 14

Bum face says...

Mr Burstow is a 2 faced slimy spineless little cockroach who has led the people served by st helier on nothing but a duck run , telling people what they want to hear & then doing exactly what they don't !!!! He,s a politician at heart & I wouldn't trust him as far as I could throw him , mp,s would sell there own mothers & my vote will be going firmly against him , I don't vote much due to them all being soulless but after the deceit he has shown carshalton il drag myself to that polling station no matter what !!!!!! ,,,,nothing but a judas !!!
Mr Burstow is a 2 faced slimy spineless little cockroach who has led the people served by st helier on nothing but a duck run , telling people what they want to hear & then doing exactly what they don't !!!! He,s a politician at heart & I wouldn't trust him as far as I could throw him , mp,s would sell there own mothers & my vote will be going firmly against him , I don't vote much due to them all being soulless but after the deceit he has shown carshalton il drag myself to that polling station no matter what !!!!!! ,,,,nothing but a judas !!! Bum face
  • Score: 10

11:23am Fri 14 Mar 14

Marie from Sutton says...

Oups, another two f... up careers.

Reputation, reputation, reputation! O, I have lost my reputation! I have lost the immortal part of myself, and what remains is ****.

WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE, Othello
Oups, another two f... up careers. Reputation, reputation, reputation! O, I have lost my reputation! I have lost the immortal part of myself, and what remains is ****. WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE, Othello Marie from Sutton
  • Score: 8

4:30pm Fri 14 Mar 14

Sameer the First says...

Erm...quite amazed to hear that Labour supporters have now made their mind up not to support a Lib Dem. I'll vote Labour anyway but I'm not going to pretend that wasn't the case previously!
Erm...quite amazed to hear that Labour supporters have now made their mind up not to support a Lib Dem. I'll vote Labour anyway but I'm not going to pretend that wasn't the case previously! Sameer the First
  • Score: 2

4:54pm Fri 14 Mar 14

palmerpalmer81 says...

i will never vote for the lib dens agine so please people of sutten do not vote for them in local elections or in next years election
i will never vote for the lib dens agine so please people of sutten do not vote for them in local elections or in next years election palmerpalmer81
  • Score: 8

11:45am Mon 17 Mar 14

Michael Pantlin says...

Stupid decision to support this clause knowing about the increased threat to his local hospital and the strength of feeling of his constituents. Just hope he reaps as he sows at the next election
Stupid decision to support this clause knowing about the increased threat to his local hospital and the strength of feeling of his constituents. Just hope he reaps as he sows at the next election Michael Pantlin
  • Score: 3

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