Bus ads still tell parents to go to Edinburgh's new Sick Kids hospital - despite cancelled opening

ADVERTS telling parents to take their youngsters to the new Sick Kids hospital are still plastered on the back of buses despite the indefinite delay in opening the building.

Wednesday, 14th August 2019, 8:02 pm
The bus adverts were designed to make sure parents did not take their youngsters to the wrong place

Edinburgh Western Lib Dem MSP Alex Cole-Hamilton said it was "lax and irresponsible" to allow the ads to continue to be displayed.

They tell parents the accident and emergency at the new hospital will open on July 9 - although Health Secretary Jeane Freeman ordered NHS Lothian to halt the move from the current site in Sciennes days before it was due to take place after it was discovered the ventilation in the critical care unit did not meet national standards.

A full safety review of the site has been commissioned to assess the water, ventilation and drainage systems.

Mr Cole-Hamilton, who is Scottish Liberal Democrat health spokesman, said: "It's extremely concerning that more than a month after the Sick Kids move was cancelled, buses are still driving around Edinburgh with big adverts advising parents of the exact opposite."The whole point of this awareness campaign was to ensure parents didn't take an ill child to the wrong place."It's lax and irresponsible to not have taken down these adverts."He added: "NHS Lothian says that anyone who does attend the deserted hospital will be transferred and treated accordingly but time can be critical and this would be more easily avoided if these adverts had been taken down weeks ago."We don't know when the hospital will finally open, we don't fully know the extent of what's wrong with it and there are conflicting claims about the hospital's future."The Health Secretary must urgently get a grip of the situation and ensure that the public is getting accurate and transparent reports on the hospital's operation."

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A Scottish Government spokesman said: "As NHS Lothian have made clear, they took immediate steps to remove bus advertising for the new site as soon as the delay became known - and they contacted all patients with appointments to inform them of the situation."We are working closely with NHS Lothian to migrate services to the new site as soon as it is safe to do so."The Health Secretary has already commissioned a full review of the problems identified at the Sick Kids site and has given her personal assurance that staff and patients will be the first to know as soon as information is available on the next steps for the phased move."In addition, Ms Freeman has kept Parliament informed during recess, has written directly to all local MSPs and MPs and expects to report on this when Parliament returns to session next month."