At yesterday’s Meath Council meeting, Sinn Féin’s Cllr Michael Gallagher submitted a motion that requested Meath County Council to write to “the HSE and the Minister for Health, to inform them that Meath County Council is opposed to the closure of the A&E and downgrade or removal of any of the services at Navan Hospital.”
Gallagher thanked and congratulated the people of Meath for coming out to the Save Navan Hospital protest on Saturday. Navan Hospital has previously been under threat of closure and Gallagher said “it was the people of Meath who kept it open”.
Cllr Paddy Meade (Fine Gael), who commended Gallagher for his motion complained about the lack of communication, “we are getting no answers, Drogheda A&E is overrun. The minister for Health used the word ‘pause’, so there is no guarantee that the A&E will stay open. Accident and Emergencies are urgent things and we need them close by, if Navan A&E closes the only other options are Drogheda, Connolly Hospital Blanchardstown, or Mullingar”.
Cllr Emer Tóibín (Aontú), who is also on the Save Navan Hospital committee, said that “there is no room for complacency. We do not want to see any department closing. I welcome any communication from the Council”.
Cllr Aisling O’Neill (Sinn Féin), who works on the frontline in Connolly Hospital, warned that “if there are any plans, it is all unknown” and mentioned that they are closing down smaller hospitals.
Cllr Nick Killian (Ind), said the word “pause” is not “good enough and it is another word for delay”. “The people of Meath don’t want Navan A&E to close, we need to instruct Minister Donnelly”.
Cllr Padraig Fitzsimons (Fianna Fáil) stated “if the A&E closes, lives will be lost. Even the HSE has said that they can’t cope if Navan Hospital is closed”. He then went on to say he was really heartened on Saturday, marching for the rally and that it is very important that all 40 councillors support this motion.
Gallagher concluded that he was “delighted” with all the support from his colleagues and that “Navan Hospital is the most critical piece of infrastructure in the county, we need to keep it open”. The motion passed unanimously.