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10,000 expected to March against closure of A&E and ICU in Navan today 

10,000 people are expected to take to the streets of Navan today at 1pm in order to stop the closure of the A&E at Our Lady’s Hospital in Navan.

Cathaoirleach of the Save Navan Hospital Campaign Peadar Tóibín TD said the march was necessary to stop the closure of the services.

“The HSE stated has stated openly that they seek to close our A&E and ICU. Indeed in the last few weeks staff, unions and medics have been told to start to prepare for this change. Our campaign had no option but to mobilise and since then the HSE has been told to pause the plan for a few months.  A stay of execution is not good enough. We need the threat to our A&E and ICU is completely lifted. We need proper resourcing of our A&E so it is there for each one of us when we need it,” he said.

“People are baffled that the HSE and the government would seek to close an A&E and ICU in the teeth of a Covid crisis where the A&E and ICU are the front line in the battle to save people’s lives. People are waiting 11 hour in the A&E in Drogheda hospital to be seen. Staff in Connolly Hospital were out on protest at conditions in their A&E in the last 2 weeks. Orthopaedic treatment in Navan had to be suspended since Monday because of the pressure on the A&E.  All Elective General Surgery has been cancelled from today in Navan to free up nursing staff to cover the overcrowding in Navan A&E. Yet shockingly, the HSE seek to close this same A&E”, the Aontú leader said.

“What’s happening is criminal. Navan A&E is a life and death issue. I know of a football player who were taken from Páirc Tailteann, hardly able to breath, to the A&E who was saved with only minutes to live. I know of people who had heart attacks, repository blockages, brain haemorrhages, burst appendix, falls from ladders and cancer tumours who are alive today because of the work that the was done by the staff. There are thousands of people who are walking the streets of our towns today because of that hospital. It is by far the most important infrastructure in our county.

One day each of us will need.  I have spoken to Medical professionals in other hospitals in the region. The majority of them are opposed to this closure due to the dangers it presents to people,” he said.

“Tomorrow speakers from all political parties will address the Rally. On behalf of the Save Navan Hospital Campaign, I will be asking them three questions. Will they, on behalf of their party commit to stopping the closures of Navan A&E and ICU.   Will they, on behalf of their party commit to properly funded A&E and finally and most importantly will they, on behalf of their party commit to deleting all references to the closure of Navan A&E and ICU from all HSE and Government policy documents, ” the Meath West TD said.

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