Doncaster needs a new hospital befitting of its status as a city as Doncaster Royal Infirmary faces huge repair bills

The decision to rule out funding for a new hospital in Doncaster once again is a major disappointment for the city.

This is evidence that the Government’s promises on new hospitals are built on sand. Not only that but it is a fiscally short-sighted move with Doncaster Royal Infirmary currently requiring around 600 maintenance repairs totalling £118m.

With an ageing population, there is an acute need for skills and expertise to meet the country’s care needs. But there is also a need to have the proper facilities in place, including buildings and equipment.

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Improved facilities also makes the workforce challenge easier to tackle as staff feel more valued working in an up to date environment. Imagine how soul destroying it must be for doctors and nurses working round the clock to administer healthcare with the infrastructure crumbling around them.

The emergency department at Doncaster Royal Infirmary. PIC: Tony JohnsonThe emergency department at Doncaster Royal Infirmary. PIC: Tony Johnson
The emergency department at Doncaster Royal Infirmary. PIC: Tony Johnson

If the Government is unwilling to fund a new hospital then the very least it can do is to ensure that money is made available towards the repair of Doncaster Royal Infirmary.

There’s been positive noises on the £25m needed to repair the Department of Critical Care but that funding can’t come from capital budgets for the East Ward Block and the Women and Children’s Block.

Tory MP for Don Valley, Nick Fletcher’s criticism of Doncaster MPs Dame Rosie Winterton, Ed Miliband and the Mayor of Doncaster is misplaced at best.

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Their willingness to compromise in the face of the Tory Government’s refusal to provide funding for a new hospital is understandable as there is a need to make improvements to Doncaster Royal Infirmary.

Mr Fletcher’s ire should instead be directed at his Government.

Doncaster was recently bequeathed city status, the sooner it receives a hospital that befits its new status, the better.

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