Save Our Stroke Unit – Public urged to come out in support of Daisy Hill Rally

March 23, 2015

Ahead of the public rally planned for this Saturday in Newry, the public is being urged to come out in numbers to help safeguard stroke services at Daisy Hill Hospital.

The Save Daisy Hill Stroke Services Rally, organised by Newry and Mourne District Council’s Health Service Working Group, will assemble at Marcus Square at 12noon from where participants will march en masse to the hospital.

The campaign to protect the future of the existing stroke unit in Daisy Hill, and to oppose any attempt to reduce wider services delivered by the hospital, has been steadily gaining momentum.  Mayor Daire Hughes says this Saturday’s event provides an opportunity for people to show their support for their local hospital and is urging everyone to join in the rally.

“Whilst this campaign is focused on saving the excellent stroke unit, it is vital for the future, that the Southern Trust and the [Health] Minister are shown the importance of Daisy Hill to the people of this area and that we will resist any attempts to reduce services.  We must show our opposition to a centralised model of health care which is not appropriate for the rural nature of Northern Ireland,” he said.

The Council’s Health Service Working Group regularly addresses problems encountered by people accessing services in Craigavon or Belfast hospitals, due to the distance, poor roads and lack of adequate transport provision.  It believes that services at Daisy Hill must be retained and indeed enhanced to ensure the safety and health of the people of this area.

The Donaldson Report into the Health Services in Northern Ireland, which is currently out for consultation, recommends drastic reductions to the numbers of acute hospitals with a level of service better suited to the more urban nature of England. Campaigners therefore believe it is vital that the community stands up at this time in support of what is acknowledged to be an excellent hospital and a life-saving service for us all.

Everyone is encouraged to come along to Marcus Square at 12 noon on Saturday 28th March to demonstrate support for Daisy Hill Hospital and appeal for the retention of its life-saving stroke services.