Category Archives: In The News

Nearly 300000 Northern Ireland patients waiting for outpatient appointment with consultant

by James Gant November 29 2018 Nearly 300,000 people in Northern Ireland were waiting for a consultant-led outpatient appointment in the three months until October, a new report has revealed. The figures from the Department of Health – from June 30 to September 30 – found the total number of patients waiting for their first meeting was 283,497. This had risen by 2.8% since the quarterly report in June and by 4% since September 2017’s results were revealed. It includes privately funded patients waiting to be seen in Health Service hospitals. A statement from the Health and Social Care Board said: “Patients have every right to expect and demand timely care. Unfortunately, for reasons that have been well documented, our system is not currently configured to provide that.” It added: “The only sustainable solution to this is transformation.” There were 212,985 outpatients who had to wait more than nine weeks … Continue reading

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Irish League legend Roy McDonald shares pain at losing three brothers

Roy McDonald By Graham Luney January 18 2019 Irish League legend Roy McDonald has revealed how he coped with the deaths of three brothers, including former Northern Ireland and Queens Park Rangers captain Alan. Alan, who steered Glentoran to their last championship success in 2009, died suddenly in June 2012 at the age of only 48. Roy feels his death was “preventable”. Full story: Read More Footballers’ Lives with Roy McDonald: I’ve lost three brothers but the saddest thing is that Alan’s death was preventable His passing was not the first personal tragedy for Roy. Another brother, Ian, died in 1986 at the age of 19 after suffering a brain haemorrhage. And Roy and his sister Linda had to say an emotional farewell to a third brother last October when Jim passed away. In an interview for our Footballers’ Lives series, the 66-year-old Crusaders stalwart reflects on how his family … Continue reading

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Constituency profile: East Antrim

Sammy Wilson June 3 2017 Despite his views on breastfeeding in public and a row over his alleged comments on ethnic minorities, the DUP will be feeling confident that larger-than-life candidate Sammy Wilson will once again emerge triumphant in the East Antrim constituency. In 2015, the outspoken DUP representative topped the poll with 12,103 votes, equivalent to 36.1% of the vote and nearly twice that of the next most popular candidate, the UUP’s Roy Beggs. While Mr Beggs garnered a respectable 6,308 votes, representing 18.8%, he will not take part in next month’s race. Instead, the UUP has chosen to put forward relative newcomer John Stewart, a former councillor on Mid and East Antrim Borough Council, who clinched his first Assembly seat in March. Then, Mr Stewart was the last candidate to be elected, while Mr Beggs got through on the sixth count. The party will be hoping his fresh-faced … Continue reading

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‘Appalling’ breast cancer referral failings at Northern Ireland trust

Disappointed: UUP health spokesperson Roy Beggs By Lauren Harte November 20 2018 Only 11.9% of urgent breast cancer referrals were seen within two weeks during September at one of Northern Ireland’s health trusts. New figures have revealed that the longest wait endured by a patient with an urgent referral in the Northern Health and Social Care Trust was 44 days. Compared to April this year, when 100% of urgent referrals within the trust area were seen within 14 days, the situation in the five months since has collapsed. Initially it fell to 84% in May, slumping to just 59% by July and then collapsing by 40% in just one month to 19% in August. Northern Ireland’s six healthcare trusts aim to have 100% of urgent breast cancer referrals seen within 14 days. Ulster Unionist health spokesperson Roy Beggs said it is “totally unfair” for patients who think they may have … Continue reading

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‘This one’s for you mum’ says award-winning Gerardine

Mid and East Antrim councillor Ald. Gerardine Mulvenna has dedicated her prestigious dementia award to her late mother. Gerardine scooped the award for her work with dementia at yesterday’s Alzheimer’s Society Dementia Friendly Awards at Belfast’s Europa Hotel. Ald. Gerardine Mulvenna was presented her Outstanding Contribution of the Year award by Danny Brown, the face of the Still Me campaign. She won the “United against Dementia: Outstanding Contribution of the Year” title and was also shortlisted in the “Dementia Friendly Community Champion of the Year” category. The award recognises those who are inspiring change to transform the lives of people with dementia by challenging misunderstandings, changing attitudes and taking action. Ald. Mulvenna has been a dementia champion since 2017 and has been a driving force behind Mid and East Antrim Borough Council’s ongoing work to enhance the quality of life for those living with dementia, and their carers. Gerardine knows … Continue reading

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