The Health Secretary says Northwick Park Hospital could be “one of the best in the country” once its new A&E unit is completed.

Secretary of State for Health Jeremy Hunt visited Northwich Park Hospital, in Watford Road and the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital (RNOH) in Stanmore today.

He was given a tour of facilities at Northwick Park with Harrow East MP Bob Blackman and Conservative parliamentary candidate for Harrow West Hannah David.

Earlier this year it was revealed North West London Hospital Trust, which runs Northwick Park Hospital, was in the bottom five in the country in meeting government A&E waiting time targets.

The hospital’s new £21million A&E is due to come into use in the autumn this year and will be closer to other emergency services on the site to make the service more efficient.

Speaking exclusively to the Harrow Times, Mr Hunt said: “There is an incredibly positive atmosphere in A&E from the staff who are working under massive pressure.

“At this time of year there would usually be a reduction in need for the service, but it has been an unusually busy spring, so I want to congratulate all of them on their hard work.”

The Harrow Times asked the minister about the pressures the hospital will face over the coming months with the downgrading of Central Middlesex Hospital’s A&E unit.

He said: “We will give the trust as much support as possible with the upcoming changes. I think this hospital can be one of the best in the county once we have seen all these plans through.”

Earlier in the day he visited the RNOH which was granted outline planning permission for the redevelopment of its facilities at its Brockley Hill site last year.

The health secretary said: “This is really a world class hospital but it does not have world-class facilities.

“It also does fantastic work lead by doctors and surgeons which I would like to be replicated at other hospitals.

“I want to work with the hospital to create a strong business plan for its redevelopment so it can be signed off as soon as possible.”

On the site 60 per cent of the buildings are more than 60 years old and many wards were originally designed for temporary use during the Second World War.

Next week on Thursday July 24 the North West London Hospitals NHS Trust will be holding its annual general meeting from 5.45pm which is open to the public.

Those interested in attending the meeting must book a space with the trust by emailing or call 020 8869 3701.