Category Archives: Health Committee

Mr Beggs is a Committee member of the Health Committee (DHSSPS).

New Secretary of State must intervene for the safety of local patients – Beggs

Ulster Unionist Party Health Spokesperson Roy Beggs MLA has urged the new Secretary of State to ditch the policy of his predecessor and directly intervene for the benefit of local patients. The East Antrim MLA has also warned that following the latest publication of emergency hospital waiting times it is now an almost certainty that the local health service is lurching towards a major winter crisis later this year. Roy Beggs said: “This is not a blip, or a short-term problem – our health service is in the midst of its worst ever waiting times crisis and it’s getting worse with every passing day. People are coming to harm because they can’t get the right type of treatment when they need it. “The fact that more than 2,800 patients in June had to wait longer than 12 hours is frightening not only in its scale, but also due to the … Continue reading

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Emergency Department waiting times wouldn’t be tolerated anywhere else in the UK

Emergency Department waiting times wouldn’t be tolerated anywhere else in the UK – Beggs Ulster Unionist Health Spokesperson Roy Beggs MLA has again highlighted that the local A&E waiting times would simply not be tolerated in any other part of the United Kingdom. Roy Beggs said: “Between April 2018 and March 2019, 88% of patients in England were treated or admitted within four hours, according to NHS England data. The figure for all the main emergency units across Northern Ireland for just the month of March 2019 was 62.3%. Whilst it’s marginally better than what it was in March 2018, any attempt by the local Department of Health to proclaim some sort of accomplishment would be totally misplaced. “Doctors in England have been warning that patients are ‘dying prematurely’ amid ‘intolerable’ hospital delays there. I am frightened to think what those same doctors would have to say about ours. “I … Continue reading

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Beggs welcomes announcement on cancer strategy

Ulster Unionist Health Spokesperson, Roy Beggs MLA, has welcomed the announcement that the Department of Health is to commission a new cancer strategy for Northern Ireland but has warned that the ongoing absence of a Minister will inevitably result in further avoidable delays. Roy Beggs said: “It is shameful that Northern Ireland is the only part of the UK not to have a cancer strategy. “Targets are set for cancer treatment because there is very sound medical evidence that the longer a patient has to wait for diagnosis or treatment, the greater the risk that they may ultimately come to harm. That’s what makes the fact that Northern Ireland is missing so many of its key cancer targets so serious and inexcusable. “It’s also a disease that is increasing rapidly – 1 in 2 people across Northern Ireland born after 1960 will be diagnosed with some form of cancer during … Continue reading

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Secretary of State cannot continue to ignore the crisis in the health service – Beggs

Ulster Unionist Health Spokesperson, Roy Beggs MLA, has said the Secretary of State cannot continue to ignore the worsening crisis in the local health service. He was commenting after the latest publication of cancer waiting times which once again revealed the scale of delays facing local patients. Roy Beggs said: “Cancer is a disease that thrives in a vacuum. The sooner it is detected and treatment can begin, the better the chance a patient has of a successful outcome. Tragically with the current delays some local cancer patients may be coming to harm as a result of the unprecedented pressures in the health service. “The publication of these latest waiting times – which in any normal democracy or society would be more than enough to shame political parties into action – further demonstrates the urgent need for an Executive and Health Minister. Yet I suspect ideology and stubbornness from some … Continue reading

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Beggs reveals scale of outstanding health decisions awaiting Ministerial sign-off

Ulster Unionist Health Spokesperson, Roy Beggs MLA, has revealed that there are currently 19 health strategies and pieces of legislation that have been delayed due to a lack of a functioning Assembly and Executive. Roy Beggs said: “It is scandalous that within the Department of Health alone there are so many pieces of legislation and key strategies stalled due to there not being a Minister in place to sign them off. “The list of issues, which were only revealed after the Ulster Unionist Party sought them directly from the Department using Freedom of Information legislation, is extensive and includes key decisions such as the publication of Northern Ireland’s next suicide prevention strategy; something which had been expected for publication in 2017. “Even the 2018/19 pay award for our doctors and nurses remains up in the air, despite being already finalised in England, Scotland and Wales. We are now half way through the financial … Continue reading

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