New investment in a West Midlands hospital could be delayed because of a row with builders over a multi-million pound rebuilding scheme.
Russells Hall Hospital was officially reopened earlier this year following a £160 million rebuild. But the builders say the work actually cost more to carry out than they were paid.
Now the hospital has announced its bid for foundation status, which would allow it to raise extra investment, has been delayed until the dispute is settled.
Local MP Ian Austin (Lab Dudley North) is to ask the Department of Health to sort out the problem as quickly as possible.
Summit Healthcare, a consortium led by construction firm Sir Robert McAlpine, was employed to build a new state-of-the-art hospital on the Russells Hall site, three times the size of the old facility. But the consortium has complained that the costs increased between the time the funding was allocated and building work was completed.