Protests over services at University Hospital Waterford

The protest is to highlight the failure to implement 24/7 cardiac care

Protests over services at University Hospital Waterford

Image: Google Maps

Protesters are taking to the streets of Waterford over services at the University Hospital.

The protest, which will begin at The Glen in Waterford City at 2.00pm, is being organised by the South East Patient Advocacy Group.

They say the protest is to highlight a failure to implement 24/7 cardiac care at the hospital, which was promised in 2012 by the then-Health Minister James Reilly.

Organisers say they are expecting thousands to travel from all corners of the South East to voice their opposition.

They say this is in relation to "the refusal" by current Health Minister Simon Harris to implement the 24/7 cardiac care - and a proposal to further downgrade cardiac services currently being carried out at University Hospital Waterford (UHW).

Hilary O'Neill, one of the founders of the South East Patient Advocacy Group, said today: "Our community group is renewing our call for Minister Simon Harris to meet with us and hear our concerns.

"People's lives are being put at risk in the South East every day between 5.30pm and 8.00am and at weekends.

"How long must we wait before the Minister will address our concerns properly? It’s only a matter of time before a life is lost as services in the South East simply are not adequate and we need that second cath lab without any further political posturing or delay."

While organiser Yvonne Cooney, added: "This is a matter of life and death.

"Today’s protest is a call for action and to have this deplorable decision overturned immediately.

This Government is refusing to invest in cardiology services for 500,000 people, which equates to 10% of the population, by refusing to implement a second cath lab at UHW".