Councillors complain to watchdog over children’s heart unit closure

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COUNCILLORS in Yorkshire have asked the Government information watchdog to demand more details about the decision to move children’s heart surgery from Yorkshire.

Politicians have made a complaint to the Information Commissioner’s Office.

Next week the Yorkshire and the Humber Joint Overview and Scrutiny Committee are to finalise a report for Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt which says Leeds has been “cheated” out of keeping its children’s heart surgery unit.

Health bosses decided in July to close the Leeds General Infirmary service and two other units.

Since then, Mr Hunt has announced the closures will be independently reviewed, following concerns from politicians in other affected areas.

But the committee said their challenge was being hampered by the lack of details from decision-makers.

Committee chairman Coun John Illingworth said: “It’s about democracy, being accountable to the public and people being transparent and open about their decisions.”

Jeremy Glyde, programme director of the Safe and Sustainable review of children’s cardiac services, said: “We have worked closely with Coun Illingworth to answer a significant number of questions and have shared with him vast amounts of information to help the referral submission.”