Rice urges change of heart on Mater Hospital

Alliance Health Spokesperson Geraldine Rice has said that proposals to downgrade the Mater Hospital are “a disservice to all the people of Belfast”.

Mrs Rice said that the plans were “jumping the gun, just as the casualty unit had undergone a £500,000 face lift” and expressed hope that the new Health Minister “would see sense and reject the proposals”.

Mrs Rice stated: “At a time when hospitals are under severe pressure, with emergency admissions one of the areas of greatest stress, it is sad and ironic that the Department would consider downgrading the Mater to a local hospital with a part-time minor injuries unit.

“The Mater serves an already impoverished community, and is perfectly positioned to serve north and west Belfast, where demands on the health service are high.

“I will be seeking a meeting to discuss the matter with the new Health Minister.”

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