Health Minister welcomes paediatric surgery initiative

Date published: 31 May 2022

Health Minister Robin Swann today welcomed the Western Health Trust announcement that it will be providing a full day of paediatric general surgery per month at South West Acute Hospital in Enniskillen.

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The initiative is part of a Northern Ireland wide drive to improve access to elective paediatric general surgery.

The Minister noted that children and young people have been particularly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, adding:

“I welcome today’s statement by Western Trust that they will provide additional theatre sessions for children at South West Acute Hospital. This is an important step to recover our elective paediatric surgery services after the difficult time over the last couple of years.”

The Minister also outlined the contribution from other Trusts.

  • Northern HSC Trust has confirmed it will be running two paediatric general surgery day lists per month from July 2022.
  • Southern HSC Trust are running two ad hoc paediatric general surgery lists in Daisy Hill Hospital and are also supporting paediatric dental and ear, nose and throat (ENT) surgery.
  • South Eastern HSC Trust are currently delivering weekly paediatric sessions across ENT, general surgery, dental and general anaesthetic MRI. It is expected that the number of sessions will increase. In addition the Trust has facilitated 11 special sessions - super Saturdays and Sundays - with 57 children being treated.
  • Belfast HSC Trust are continuing delivering paediatric surgery at the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children.

The Minister added: “As I have previously said, I will have a relentless drive on bringing down waiting times. Today’s announcement by Western Trust and the steps taken in other Trusts will allow us to do so across elective paediatric general surgery. This is a positive development and something that needs to continue across all specialities and all Trusts.”


Notes to editors: 

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