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Home › News › RCS Statement: College responds to the Royal Brompton Judicial Review decision

RCS Statement: College responds to the Royal Brompton Judicial Review decision

07 November 2011

The Royal College of Surgeons (RCS) believes the decision by the High Court to find the review of children’s heart surgery services ‘unlawful’ is disappointing.

It is vital that those children who require complex heart surgery get the best treatment available. The RCS believe that concentrating surgeons’ expertise into specialist centres rather than spreading them too thinly across numerous hospitals will give patients the best quality of care.

Professor Norman Williams, President of the Royal College of Surgeons, said:

"While it would be understandably disappointing for those high-performing units that would need to close as a result of the review, these decisions have to be been taken in the very best interest of the patients involved. Surgeons agree that a comprehensive, stable and safe children’s heart surgery services would be best delivered in fewer centres staffed by a minimum of four surgeons who are able to offer 24 hour care and support for each other. It is deeply concerning that a national issue with widespread support from the profession can be held up in this way."

Notes to Editor:

  1. The Royal College of Surgeons of England is committed to enabling surgeons to achieve and maintain the highest standards of surgical practice and patient care. Registered charity number: 212808. For more information please visit
  2. If you have any queries please contact:
    Matthew Worrall – Email:; T: 020 7869 6047
    Elaine Towell – Email:; T: 020 7869 6045
    Katie Bennett - Email: T: 020 7869 6052
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