THERE will be a meeting tonight at Fermanagh House at 7pm regarding the public consultation on the collapse of emergency general surgery at the South West Acute Hospital, which is due to open next week.
Being held by the Save Our Acute Services (SOAS) campaign group, the meeting is to consider how the group and the community should best engage with the consultation.
The Western Trust has announced on the “temporary” removal of the life-saving service – which was suspended in December due to a lack of surgeons, meaning local patients now have to travel for unplanned surgery – will open on the week beginning January 16th and will last for 12 weeks.
The Trust has said the consultation will outline the circumstances needed to reinstate the service, although chief executive Neil Guckian has warned this will be difficult due to recruitment challenges and restrictive conditions set out by the Department of health. The Trust has vowed to implement any viable solution to the situation that is presented during the process.
This legally-required consultation will involve a series of public meetings, both in person and online, with further details to be announced in the coming days. As part of this, the Trust has accepted a request from the local Council to hold public meetings in a venue capable of accommodating between 1,500-2000 people.
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