The Health Minister, Edwin Poots MLA, has reaffirmed his support and commitment to the Causeway Hospital.
The Minister visited the Causeway Hospital today where he toured medical and surgical wards in the hospital before concluding his visit in the Emergency Department.
Minister Poots said: “I am visiting Causeway Hospital today to very publicly provide my backing and support as the Chief Executive of the Northern Trust, supported by the Health and Social Care Board and the Public Health Agency, seek to improve performance in their Emergency Departments. Like them, I reiterate my commitment to the provision of safe and effective quality services to all patients and clients, across all service areas.
“This must be the over-riding priority, and it is for that reason that I have taken the decision to appoint an external expert team to support the Trust to help turn around performance in critical areas and why today I am visiting Causeway Hospital to meet with the staff and patients on the ground.”
Last month Mr Poots agreed to establish a small Turnaround and Support Team to address the significant challenges the Northern Trust is facing in seeking to improve performance in its Emergency Departments.
The Minister continued: “It is vital that the population of the Northern Health and Social Care Trust has access to safe, sustainable services for the long term. I have not made any decisions yet in relation to the future configuration of services in the Northern Trust area, including the Causeway Hospital. None of the proposals under consideration suggest closing Causeway Hospital as an option, however we cannot ignore the current fragility of some services at Causeway Hospital.
“There will be change at every hospital in the province over the next few years and it is clear that the service profile at Causeway Hospital will have to change if it is to remain viable into the future. The Northern Trust is facing very real and significant challenges in maintaining current services. In addition, Transforming Your Care makes it clear that the shape of hospital services in the future and indeed all our health and social care services need to change so that we can deliver the level and standard of care required for the future.”