Why upgrade the A&E facilities?

I READ with interest the article entitled ‘Major upgrade for hospital unit’ (News Post Leader, August 25), which described the provision of enhanced facilities at Wansbeck General Hospital to deal with the increased number of patients at its accident and emergency department.

The article further states (quoting an official of the trust) that this completes the major refurbishment of the A&E department.

It is my understanding that it is envisioned that a new specialist A&E hospital will be built in the near future in East Cramlington and that the Wansbeck A&E department will be closed.

Given these plans, I wonder why this upgrading to the A&E facilities has gone ahead.

I note from the article that around 200 people attend Wansbeck Hospital’s unit A&E each day. This gives a total of 73,000 patients per year.

The proposed emergency hospital is being built in expectation of 60,000 patients, and in order to make it viable we are told that all the A&Es in Northumberland and North Tyneside will close.

It is clear that something does not add up here.