Press Release

Minister Power opens heart health conference in Athlone

Mr Séan Power T.D., Minister for State with responsibility for Health Promotion, has today (4th November 2004) opened a cardiovascular health conference in Athlone.  The 2-day meeting will involve healthcare professionals from all parts of the country who are involved in the implementation of the Cardiovascular Health Strategy, a long term, co-ordinated, multi-sectoral approach to improving Ireland’s heart health.

The meeting will consider future challenges in improving Ireland’s heart health as the health services undergo major structural reforms.

“The new structures facilitate strategic approaches to the development of high quality services, for all patients including those with heart disease.  I look forward to working with the health service staff in this new era,” said Minister Power.

Additional €3 million of new funding was allocated in 2004 to the implementation and enhancement of cardiac services, throughout the country, including

  • new Catheterisation Laboratories in Tullamore and Waterford
  • new chest pain clinics in Limerick and Drogheda.
  • the appointment of two additional consultant cardiologists

This funding brings to €57 million, the total invested in cardiology services over the last five years under the Cardiovascular Health Strategy, “Building Healthier Hearts”, launched by the Taoiseach in 1999.

Minister thanked those attending the meeting, including Professor Jane Wilde, Chair of the Advisory Forum on Cardiovascular Health and Mr John Bowman, Chair of the Heart Health Task Force for their dedication and enthusiasm in implementing the Strategy.

He stressed the government’s continued commitment to increasing access and improving the quality of cardiology services for patients throughout the country.