Press Release

Minister of State Callely Opens Stroke Unit at the Mater Hospital

Mr Ivor Callely, T.D., Minister of State at the Department of Health and Children, today, (2 February 2004) formally opened a six-bedded Stroke Unit at the Mater Hospital.

The Stroke Unit will admit all emergency stroke cases from the HospitalĀ“s Accident and Emergency Department for acute medical treatment, management and early rehabilitation.

Stroke is the most common cause of neurological disability and the third most common cause of death in Ireland. It is recognized that acute hospital care is just one component of a healthcare delivery system. Hospital services for stroke victims cannot be evaluated in isolation from the necessary primary care, community services and specialist care services.

“A national action plan for rehabilitation services is currently being prepared by the Department of Health and Children. The action plan will set out a programme to meet existing shortfalls in services and to integrate specialized facilities with locally based follow-up services”, stated the Minister.

The Rehabilitation Action Plan, together with the Comhairle Report and the work undertaken by the Neurological Alliance of Ireland through its own publications will offer a comprehensive policy framework for the future development of neurology and neurophysiology services in this country.

“Organized care of stroke patients within a single unit has been shown to decrease death and disability by 25%” said the Minister. He went on to congratulate the Mater Hospital, the Northern Area Health Board and the Eastern Regional Health Authority for their foresight in proposing and supporting the development.