SDLP MLA for Mid Ulster, Patsy McGlone, has warned that the lives of the public are being put at risk due to issues with staffing cover for paramedics in both the Cookstown and Magherafelt areas.
Mr McGlone said, “A constituent recently contacted my office with their concerns after, on numerous dates throughout July and August, paramedic shifts were ‘dropped’ in both the Cookstown and Magherafelt areas due to issues with staffing cover.
“The problem occurred during both day and night shifts, resulting in cover being sought from other areas. This clearly left the paramedic service severely understaffed on these occasions.
“This not only puts a greater strain on the paramedics who are working, but also has the potential to place the lives of the public at risk.
“I have written to the Health Minister seeking an investigation into the situation to reveal the reasons for the lack of paramedic cover in the Mid Ulster area.
“I am also seeking an assurance from the Minister that measures will be put in place by his department to ensure that this does not become an ongoing problem.
“I expect the Minister to respond to these concerns promptly, and for measures to be implemented as soon as possible to prevent a recurrence of this issue.”