Page last updated at 13:37 GMT, Monday, 26 April 2010 14:37 UK

Heart surgery under review at Oxford's JR Hospital

The children's heart surgery unit at Oxford's John Radcliffe (JR) hospital could close as part of a national review of paediatric heart centres.

The JR unit is one of the smallest of 11 centres being assessed for their viability.

The NHS National Specialised Commissioning Group will recommend which centres should stop doing surgery, and which should be expanded.

The results of the study are expected to be published later this year.

Patients' groups have called for extra support for families facing long journeys if the JR unit is closed.

'Specialised services'

Professor Chris Ham, of the King's Fund charity which campaigns for improved medical services, said the primary issue is ensuring patients get the best care, even if they have to travel.

"I think most people would say that's a price worth paying, but support for patients and families making those journeys will be essential."

Cardiac surgeon David Barron, based at Birmingham Children's Hospital, said the centres would be reorganised to offer better care.

"These are very specialised services and they have to be delivered by teams of experienced professionals working together in centres of excellence.

"We know that you can't deliver that in smaller centres."

Print Sponsor

Call to cut child heart op units
25 Apr 10 |  Health

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2019 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific