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Fears over crucial Daisy Hill services

All the indications are that the growing fears which have been expressed about the future of emergency services at Daisy Hill hospital in Newry are fully justified.

The Southern Health and Social Care Trust confirmed yesterday that a temporary suspension, particularly during the summer months, could not be ruled out due to a shortage of permanent senior medical staff.

While no chances can be taken over patient safety, Daisy Hill is a vital facility in the region and every possible effort must be made to maintain its emergency department.

There would be enormous concern if major long-term decisions about any of our main hospitals were taken in the continuing absence of a Stormont health minister.

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