The family of a Waterford woman who was forced to wait 19 hours for an operation after suffering three heart attacks has called for the roll out of 24/7 cardiac services nationally.
Una McDermott suffered a cardiac event on Sunday March 4th however it was Monday morning before a stent could be inserted.
She died three weeks later.
The Irish Times reports that Una McDermot arrived at University Hospital Waterford at 2.30pm on Sunday March 4th.
She suffered a second cardiac event in the hospital and staff had to resuscitate her, whereupon a decision was taken to transfer her by air ambulance to Cork.
However Ms McDermot had to be resuscitated again on route to Waterford Airport and was brought back to UHW where she was admitted to intensive care.
Her sister Eva Creely told the Irish Times that it was impossible to predict what would have been the outcome for her younger sister after she suffered the first heart attack but said the lact of 24/7 services at UHW reduced the medical options available.
Ms Creely is keen to stress that she cannot say the attempt to transfer her sister to Cork or the delay in her sister having the stent procedure contributed to her death but she does believe the case does highlight the need for the provision of 24/7 services in the South East as there is in Dublin.
“People in Waterford and the south-east pay exactly the same sort of taxes and the same health insurance as people in other parts of the country and yet have to be transferred out of their area at weekends because there are no cardiac services available and that issue needs to be addressed.”
A spokesman for the South/South West Hospital Group, which includes UHW, declined to comment.