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Minister needs to ensure best care for children’s heart surgery patients - Maeve McLaughlin

21 January, 2014 - by Maeve McLaughlin

Sinn Féin MLA Maeve McLaughlin said there were serious questions for the Health Minister to answer following the ordeal that a family had to go through as they brought their child to England for cardiac surgery.

The Sinn Féin health spokesperson and chair of the Assembly’s Health Committee said:

“Clearly there are questions to be answered surrounding the condition of the air ambulance used to transport this child and his mother to England for life-saving surgery.

“Sinn Féin has repeatedly said that when surgery is not possible in Belfast, the trauma and expense of bringing seriously ill children to England made the option of Dublin a more sensible one.

“In early December the minister along with his counterpart in Dublin announced a review to assess the current and future needs for children’s heart surgery on an all-Ireland basis.

“Until that review is complete and procedures put in place to accommodate the needs of children with cardiac surgery needs, the minister needs to ensure that children and their families currently requiring treatment have the best and least stressful care possible.

“This has clearly not happened in this case and the minister needs to explain what went wrong and ensure it is not repeated.”

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