The Chief Executive of the Southern Trust has responded following criticism over advice she gave around domiciliary care packages.
Dr Maria O’Kane, speaking to a special meeting with Newry, Mourne and Down District Council at the start of November, suggested that patients who were able to leave hospital, even with incomplete home care packages, should do so.
Dr O’Kane was quoted in the meeting as saying: “If three quarters of an after care package is all we can do, then take it and leave.”
Dr O’Kane – who says that remarks made at the meeting, and subsequent media coverage of the presentation, were placed out of context – spoke to Armagh I to set the record straight around home care packages for patients.
Dr O’Kane said: “If it’s possible to go home at all with some support for short periods of time, to give us time to get everything sorted out, then please take that.
“We run the risk of actually not being as helpful as we possibly can, to the patient, by actually keeping them in hospital.”
Listen to her full interview above.