Littlehampton’s MP Nick Gibb made a fresh bid this week to highlight the need for a new hospital in the town.
Speaking in the House of Commons on Tuesday, Mr Gibb raised the issue of the rebuilding of the Littlehampton Community Hospital with the health minister, Dr Dan Poulter.
Mr Gibb, one of the leading figures in the campaign to have a new hospital built, asked the minister whether the views of local people should carry greater weight than decisions taken by NHS officials.
He said: “If there is a conflict between local health officials and local people as to the desirability of a community hospital – as there is in relation to the Littlehampton Community Hospital, which most people in Littlehampton want to see rebuilt – whose views should prevail when there is such a conflict of opinion, the NHS employees or the residents of Littlehampton?”
Dr Poulter replied that he was aware of the campaign for the hospital to be rebuilt and that local health officials ultimately decide these issues.
Mr Gibb said afterwards: “For years the people of Littlehampton, local councillors, the local MP and campaigners have been arguing that the community hospital in Littlehampton should be rebuilt.
“The current board of NHS West Sussex have decided not to rebuild the hospital, a view shared by the shadow Coastal West Sussex Clinical Commissioning Group. But the people of Littlehampton take a different view, that I believe in a democracy should ultimately prevail.
“The individuals who make up these NHS boards, or the Clinical Commissioning Group, do come and go and views and priorities change. The fight will continue to secure a community hospital in Littlehampton.”