AFTER MANY months of waiting, the Future Fit consultation on hospital services at Shrewsbury and Telford, is still at a standstill.

Health campaigners in Montgomeryshire have been waiting months for the consultation to be held.

Welshpool Town Council held a referendum in late October in the belief when they organised it, it would be at the time of the consultation.

They spoke about a campaign to upgrade services at Welshpool’s Victoria Memorial Hospital.

They fear that patients from this area will have to travel to Telford for routine consultation meetings and procedures.

At last week’s Welshpool Town Council meeting town clerk, Robert Robinson, said that he’d been in touch with Future Fit who told him that the consultation was due to start “in the next couple of days.”

Mr Robinson, said: “They’ve said that before, we shall wait and see.

“More people in Welshpool will be going to Telford for consultations.

“Hazel (deputy mayor) had to go all the way there for a 10 minute consultation, which is a bit of a joke.”

Cllr Estelle Bleivas said: “In the past things were done locally, the eye consultant was there, but they all vanished in bits and pieces.”

Mayor of Welshpool, Cllr Stephen Kaye, said the question had to be asked to get more services back to Welshpool.

A spokeswoman for NHS Future Fit said: “NHS Shropshire and Telford CCGs are preparing to launch a formal public consultation about the hospital services delivered at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital and the Princess Royal Hospital.

“Consultation documents and a survey are being prepared which will ask for people’s views on two options:

“The Royal Shrewsbury Hospital becomes an Emergency Care site and the Princess Royal Hospital becomes a Planned Care site (this is the CCGs’ preferred option)

“The Princess Royal Hospital becomes an Emergency Care site and the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital becomes a Planned Care site

“Under either option, both hospitals would have an Urgent Care Centre that is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

“The NHS Future Fit team continue to follow a robust assurance process and we are currently awaiting formal feedback from NHS England regarding next steps.”

The consultation on the reform of A&E and NHS services for Mid Wales and Shropshire should now be rescheduled for early in the New Year, says Glyn Davies, Conservative MP for Montgomeryshire.

Mr Davies says that the consultation should now be scheduled to begin early next year, and should be limited to the statutory required period of 12 weeks rather than the expected 14 weeks.

He has added that his suggestion is against a background of disappointment that the public consultation has not already been launched, but he remains confident that work on the £200 million reform will begin in early 2018.