Offaly Independent

Published: Tuesday, 18th February, 2014 3:57pm

Naughten seeks clarity on future of Portiuncula maternity services

Profile by Laura Ryder

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Denis Naughten has called on the Minister for Health to clarify the position regarding the future of maternity services at Portiuncula Hospital in Ballinasloe.

It comes in the wake of claims that a review into maternity services in the West/Northwest Hospitals Group will recommend the closure of three maternity units across the region, with only units at Galway University Hospital and Letterkenny General Hospital being retained.

"The Minister must provide immediate clarity on the future of Portiuncula Hospital's maternity unit," Deputy Naughten said in a statement just released. "Any reconfiguration that would see the removal of maternity services from the hospital must be opposed."

Deputy Naughten said closing maternity services at Portiuncula would have serious implications "including placing the health of both mothers and babies at risk". He also said it would threaten the status of the hospital itself.

Deputy Naughten is now calling for the report commissioned by the hospital group to be published immediately and for the Health Minister to clarify the situation regarding the future of maternity services in Portiuncula Hospital in particular.

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