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Brady and Ferris raise need for increased North-South health co-operation

28 May, 2015 - by Mickey Brady, Martin Ferris TD

Sinn Féin’s Martin Ferris TD and Mickey Brady MP attended a meeting of the Joint Committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement (GFA) to discuss the need for greater North-South co-operation in health care and services with the Minister for Health, Leo Varadkar.

Deputy Ferris said:

“It was great to have Mickey join me at the Committee today after his brilliant election campaign in Newry and Armagh, where he romped home with an increased Sinn Féin vote.

“North-South co-operation in health has significantly increased in recent years but more needs to be done. There needs to be a Strategic Framework for North-South co-operation rather than local and one off schemes. Regular meetings need to take place and officials assigned to specifically enhance and deepen co-operation.

“The price of medicine is crippling for a lot of families, and Minister Varadkar must prioritise reducing these costs in effective North-South co-operation.

“At the meeting I also raised the urgent need to ensure that there is an all-Ireland action plan on suicide prevention. Suicide is affecting communities all over this island and we need a robustly funded strategy to tackle this huge problem.”

Mickey Brady MP said:

“I was happy that my first GFA Committee meeting was on the important issue of all-Ireland health co-operation.

“I was a member of the Stormont Health Committee for many years and I raised core issues that we needed to work on to create an adequate health service for this island.

“The DUP Minister for Health, Simon Hamilton, didn’t make time in his schedule to attend, so I and couldn’t raise the need for greater co-operation with him, but I did give Minister Varadkar a northern perspective and the views of my constituents in Newry and Armagh.”

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