Hazzard seeks urgent clarity on future of Downe A&E
South Down MLA Chris Hazzard has said that the South Eastern Trust must clarify its position on the future of Emergency services at the Downe Hospital in Downpatrick.
Speaking at the South Eastern Trust Board meeting this morning, the Sinn Féin MLA said he was "seriously alarmed" that the Minister and his officials appear to be travelling in two different directions.
Mr Hazzard said:
"In a recent reply to me on the floor of the Assembly, the Health Minister Edwin Poots confirmed that he wanted to see the 24hr restoration of A&E services at the Downe, yet the South Eastern Health Trust today announced that their preferred vision for the Downe is a minor injuries unit.
"The Minister and the Trust must now clarify the direction of travel for health services at the Downe. Its bad enough that the Trust cut our local A&E without consulting with local representatives and the community, but to be now working in opposition to the Minister is unforgivable.
Mr Hazzard added:
"I will once again be urgently writing to the Minister in order to address this issue; if the South Eastern Health Trust are working to an alternative agenda than the people of South Down at least deserve clarity on the way ahead."