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  • Writer's pictureMichelle Weir (Local Democracy Reporter)

Health Minister offers assurances over future of services at Moyle Hospital



Health Minister Robin Swann has offered an assurance over the future of outpatient services at the Moyle Hospital in Larne.


The issue was highlighted in a social media post by East Antrim DUP MLA Gordon Lyons who said he has been contacted regarding concerns over the future of outpatient services at the hospital.



In a letter of reply, the Health Minister Robin Swann said one obstetric clinic was temporarily suspended due to staffing issues but this is “due to be re-established in due course”.


Mr Swann stated:


“I have been advised that one weekly clinic has been suspended as a temporary measure due to staffing issues.



“I have been assured that no other clinics at the Moyle are affected and that the Northern Health and Social Care Trust anticipates being able to re-establish the suspended clinic in due course. I understand that in the interim, the Trust are continuing to run a weekly midwifery-led antenatal clinic on the Moyle site.


“Northern Health and Social Care Trust invested £340,000 last year to replace the roof in Moyle outpatients. This is in addition to a number of smaller schemes in recent years totalling £50,000.


“The Trust has no plans to make any further changes to the provision of outpatient clinics on the Moyle Hospital site.”



Mr Lyons noted recent work to refurbish the roof of the hospital’s outpatients’ department, saying it is “imperative that the services provided on site are protected”.


A spokesperson for the Northern Health and Social Care Trust said:


“The Northern Trust would like to reassure the local community that there are no plans to change the provision of outpatient clinics at the Moyle Hospital site.


“The obstetric antenatal clinic which is temporarily suspended due to staffing issues will resume as soon as possible.



"All other clinics remain unaffected and we continue to run a weekly midwifery-led antenatal clinic at the site. Moyle Hospital has recently benefited from significant investment, signalling our ongoing commitment to the future.”


In November 2021, a business case was approved by the Northern Health and Social Care Trust board for a new roof at the outpatients’ department.


Finance and estates director Owen Harkin told members at the time the roof of the single storey building at Gloucester Avenue, which was constructed in 1964, was “at the end of its life cycle”.


The outpatient department remained open at the Moyle Hospital following the loss of acute services which transferred to Antrim Hospital when it opened in 1994.

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