Newry Mourne & Down Councillor Róisín Mulgrew has said the decision by the Southern Health Trust to relocate the Community Nursing team to a central hub at Ivybrook in Newry, was a cause of great concern.

“I have been informed that the Community Nursing Team serving the wider Newry and south Armagh areas will be moved from their current sites of delivery of services to Ivybrook in Newry. This is a cause of concern. For example the staff and services provided in and  from Bessbrook Clinic serve a wide rural area. The logic for removing staff from Bessbrook to travel to Newry and then travel back out to Bessbrook, makes no sense either to staff or many of those in the community I have discussed the issue with”.

Mickey Brady MP & Cllr Roisin Mulgrew outside Bessbrook Clinic
Mickey Brady MP & Cllr Roisin Mulgrew outside Bessbrook Clinic

The local Councillor said that she, along with her colleague Mickey Brady MP hoped to discuss the issue with both staff and the Trust.

“Myself and Mickey intend meeting with staff on whom this decision was bounced on without any prior consultation. We also hope to meet with the Trust to make clear our serious concerns about this proposed removal of the staff. Unfortunately when things like this happen it signals the end of a service and we can’t allow that to happen. Bessbrook Clinic is valued by the community and essential to the health and well being of all in the area ”

Newry and Armagh MP Mickey Brady commenting on the issue said “Staff like myself are worried about the impact on service to patients. This has to be a priority. The area served is a large rural community and the Bessbrook facility was viewed as an effective and efficient hub”.

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