The South Eastern Trust Welcomes Decision to Approve Future Model of Urgent and Emergency Care in Ards and North Down

30th August 2023

The South Eastern Health & Social Care Trust welcomes the Department of Health’s decision to approve proposals for the reshaping of urgent and emergency care services.

The plans were the subject of a 12 week public consultation, which included both public and online events.

The first phase will see the opening of a Consultant led Minor Injury Unit (MIU) 8am-6pm, 7 days a week at the Ulster Hospital site. This will replace the Minor Injury Unit at Ards Community Hospital and the Minor Injury Unit at Bangor Community Hospital. The Bangor Minor Injury Unit has been closed on a temporary basis since 2020.

The Ards Community Hospital MIU, less than five miles away from the Ulster Hospital site, currently operates 9am-5pm Monday to Friday.

The second phase of the plans will involve provision of a full Urgent Care Centre 8am-8pm, 7 days a week, co-located with the new Emergency Department in the Ulster Hospital’s Acute Services Block.

The Trust’s Chief Executive, Roisin Coulter said, “I welcome Peter May’s decision. Clinical staff in the Trust believe the creation of an Urgent Care Centre at the Ulster Hospital, will provide the community with a more comprehensive service than is currently available at the Ards Minor Injury Unit, as well as helping to improve patient flow through the Emergency Department at the Ulster Hospital. This is a more sustainable model of care in the future.

“Having a new Consultant led Urgent Care Centre, co-located with the new Emergency Department at the Ulster Hospital, will give patients easier access to medical assessment and clinical investigations, if required, on the same site.

“I would like to thank our staff in both Ards and Bangor Minor Injury Units for the excellent care and service they have provided to the community.”

The Trust remains committed to both the Ards and Bangor Community Hospitals. They will continue to deliver a wide range of Primary and Community Care Services for the local population.

We would like to thank the public, our partner organisations and elected and community representatives for their continued understanding and for the support offered to our dedicated and committed staff as they continue to work tirelessly to protect and care for our community.