Our battle for permanent 24/7 cardiac cover at University Hospital Waterford (UHW) is well documented and we can only hope and continue to fight for equality with other regions.
Because of their remoteness, our Munster neighbours in rural Cork and Kerry have also been at a disadvantage in instances when time is vital in getting patients to major hospitals.
However, come August, the situation will greatly improve for them because they will be able to take advantage of this country’s first community air-ambulance.
Based at Cork Airport, the flying doctors bring an area of 10,000 square miles within 20 minutes of critical care.
The new helicopter air service will complement existing emergency services but will be able to provide care and swift transport within the ‘golden hour’ when medical interventions have the greatest impact on saving lives.
The cost of the new service will be in the region of €2m per annum and it’s not exactly clear who will be footing the bill. However, the chief executive of Irish Community Rapid Response said he was confident the public would back Ireland’s first flying doctors which, I suspect, means it’s a private service.