MP presses top official on Downe

MP presses top official on Downe

16 November 2011

THE team spearheading the review of health services across the Province has heard the case for retaining and enhancing services at the Downe Hospital.

The case was put by South Down MP Margaret Ritchie during a meeting with the review team headed by Mr. John Compton, the chief executive of the Health and Social Care Board.

Miss Ritchie said she impressed upon review team members the rural nature of South Down and that frontline health services must be accessible to local people.

She also outlined how the culture of concentrating services in the Belfast area had disadvantaged the population of South Down in the past.

“I would be hopeful that the review team will look at additional services that could be provided at both the Downe and the Daisy Hill hospital in Newry,” the MP continued.

Miss Ritchie said the recent meeting looked at North/South co-operation as a means of improving health care services, particularly in terms of paediatric medicine at Daisy Hill.

She continued: “We also discussed the vita role of early years provision, health care services and the great work being undertaken at the midwife-led unit in Downpatrick, along with the delivery of maternity services at Daisy Hill.”

Miss Ritchie added: “Overall, the meeting was positive and I will continue to monitor the progress of the health service review and look for the best possible outcomes for the community of South Down.”