The health services on both sides of the border are set to benefit from a welcome investment from the EU’s INTERREG VA programme secured by Cooperation and Working Together (CAWT), the cross border health and social care partnership.
The Special EU Programmes Body has awarded a total of ¤26.5 million euros to the CAWT Partnership, which will directly benefit people living in Northern Ireland and the border counties of the Republic of Ireland.
This EU funding will be used to support four large-scale cross border health and social care projects up to 2021. The projects are in the areas of acute hospital services, mental health, children’s services and community health and well-being. A fifth project is being led by NHS Scotland and is in the area of primary care and older people’s services. The CAWT Partnership is an active participant in this Scottish led Project which has a budget of 8.7million euros.
The HSE, through its North/ South Unit in Manorhamilton is the Lead Partner for this new INTERREG funding allocation which will enable further progress and expansion of cross border health services and will see the recruitment of over 100 staff when the projects are fully rolled out.
Coupled with the recent major developments in all-Island and cross border health services including the investment of £65 million in the North West Cancer Centre at Altnagelvin Area Hospital, the Emergency Cardiology Service for Donegal being provided via Altnagelvin Area Hospital and the development of Paediatric Congenital Cardiac Services in Dublin to cater for the all-Island population, we expect this EU INTERREG investment to lead to further consolidation of North/South Co-operation in the vital health and social care sector.