I am grateful to Mr Speaker for granting me the opportunity to raise this issue, which is very important to my constituents in Coventry South. I am sure it is also important to the constituents of colleagues from Warwickshire.
I thank my colleagues—my hon. Friends the Members for Coventry North East (Colleen Fletcher), for Coventry North West (Mr Robinson) and for Warwick and Leamington (Matt Western), and the hon. Members for Nuneaton (Mr Jones), for Rugby (Mark Pawsey) and for North Warwickshire (Craig Tracey)—for their support. Together, we sent a letter to the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care to request a meeting to discuss these issues, and I am keenly awaiting a response. Many of those colleagues also attended an informative meeting with two surgeons from the hepato-pancreato-biliary unit at University Hospital Coventry, Mr Khan and Mr Lam. The point of the letter was that we wished to discuss the transfer of the HPB unit, which provides pancreatic services at University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire, to hospitals in Birmingham and Worcester.
UHCW has been developing pancreatic cancer services since 1990. It has an excellent team of doctors, specialists, nurses, surgeons and other healthcare professionals, and has completed more than 1,000 major operations and thousands of other therapies. It deploys cutting-edge robotic, endoscopic and radiologic technology to treat patients in Coventry. It takes a patient-centred approach to its service, resulting in excellent feedback from those who have undergone treatment in its care. The success of the department cannot be denied. The outcomes of therapies are on a par with international standards in all spheres. Proposals to shut down this extremely successful department will be a great loss to the NHS.