Plans by the SE Health trusts that will allow patients to visit the hospital at any time of the day and the night has got an approvals and this also means Health Minister Edwin Poot's victory and the campaign to restore 24 hour emergency cover at the Lagan Valley gets a nod.
The proposal was all about increasing the opening hours and that too in less than a year as the service could not be continued due to a shortage of junior doctors. The proposal has been welcomed by ministers.
Due to a `GP out of hours' service given at the site, there will be an increase in the opening hours at the emergency department.
As soon as possible, this step will get a go ahead, as stated by Poots. About 97 per cent of the patients will be covered with this step and these are those people who would have been seen in the old system with the less serious treated on site and those who need more specialist treatment being transferred to the Royal or the Ulster.
Poots said, "I very much welcome the recommendation of the Board that the Lagan Valley Hospital should operate on a 24 hour basis once again. It will cover 97 per cent of those patients who would have used the service before the reduction in hours last year."