Hundreds attend vigil calling for 24-hour cardiac care after death of Thomas Power in Waterford

Hundreds attend vigil calling for 24-hour cardiac care after death of Thomas Power in Waterford
Vigil at University Hospital Waterford. Pictured at a vigil at the enterance of University Hospital Waterford for improved cardiac services. Picture: Patrick Browne.

Hundreds of people staged a vigil outside University Hospital Waterford last night calling for 24-hour cardiac care for the region.

It followed the death of a local man last weekend, while being transferred to a hospital in Cork.

The need for Cath Lab services 'out of hours' is a long running dispute for the community who say election promises have not been delivered on.

Una Dunphy from the Still Waiting Health Campaign, says local people feel they are being ignored.

"We decided to hold a vigil because of the tragic death of Thomas Power.

"It was kind of giving a voice of solidarity from the community to the family, while also displaying public anger and outrage at the situation that we know exists.

"We know a long time it exists in Waterford and in the South-East region, where we haven't got cardiac care from 5pm in the evening Monday to Friday, and not at all at the weekend," she said.

Thomas Power, 40, died on Sunday afternoon about 30 minutes after leaving UHW by ambulance for Cork.

Vigil at University Hospital Waterford. Pictured at a vigil at the enterance of University Hospital Waterford for improved cardiac services. Picture: Patrick Browne.
Vigil at University Hospital Waterford. Pictured at a vigil at the enterance of University Hospital Waterford for improved cardiac services. Picture: Patrick Browne.

The UHW cath lab, where cardiac tests and procedures take place, only operates Monday to Friday 9am-5pm.

Mr Power had been married for nine months, had just finished building a house and his wife Bernie is expecting their first child.

Health Minister Simon Harris said earlier this week that he is open to a further review on the issue of cath labs in the South East.

“I commissioned an independent clinical review in relation to the cath lab situation in Waterford.

“I followed the recommendations in full, in terms of the allocation of additional resources, and I’m now putting in place a mobile cath lab.

“As Minister, I’ll always stand by clinical recommendations. I am open, though, after the improvements that Professor Herity has made, of taking course to have a further review on the issue,” he said.

Thomas Power on his wedding day to his wife Bernadette last September.
Thomas Power on his wedding day to his wife Bernadette last September.

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