Ryde Hospital’s Emergency Department has had its status as a mental health facility removed.

NSW Opposition Health spokesman Walt Secord said the removal downgrades the Emergency Department’s status.

Ryde is one of NSW’s busiest suburban emergency departments seeing 28,000 patients annually and the two nearest emergency departments are 13 kilometres away at Royal North Shore Hospital and seven kilometres away in Concord.

Ryde Hospital’s Emergency Department had been classified as a Mental Health Facility since 2009 and it is not known if specialist mental health nurses will loose their jobs.

“The Baird Government is continuing its cuts to health and hospital and the downgrading of Ryde Hospital’s emergency department is the latest one,” Mr Secord said.

“This was done under a cloak of secrecy and without any community consultation.”

“This is the human cost of the massive cuts to health and hospitals by the Liberals.”

Mayor Laxale agreed.

“Rather than reducing services at Ryde Hospital and its emergency department, the Baird Government should be supporting staff and patients.”