Game-changing NHS investment is long overdue
In 2004 health chiefs promised families in Leeds a dedicated children’s and maternity hospital. Three years later that promise was unceremoniously broken, prompting this newspaper – out of sheer anger and frustration – to launch our Leeds Needs A Children’s Hospital campaign, demanding Government Ministers put the health and wellbeing of families in this region back at the top of the agenda.
Well, yesterday, all of yours and our efforts paid off as the Government announced that Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust will be one of six to share in £2.7 billion of brand new money to build here two new hospitals: a ‘state-of-the-art’ adults facility and in a first for the city, a dedicated place for children and young people’s health needs.
There will have been no small amount of relief and joy felt for so many people who have for a decade and a half felt so let down by previous failures to deliver on what is for the people of Leeds and wider Yorkshire, nothing less than a matter of life and death.
Health bosses are right to record their elation at the announcements made by Health Secretary Matt Hancock but this would not be Yorkshire if, having been so badly let down by previous empty promises, we remain cautiously optimistic. In short, we are delighted. But we’ll believe it when we see it.