Protests at Official Openings

Health Minister opens Boyle and Ballymote Primary Care Centres

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Health Minister opens Boyle and Ballymote Primary Care Centres

Minister for Health Simon Harris T.D. performs the official opening of Ballymote Primary and Mental Health Care Centre in Ballymote, Co. Sligo. Photo by James Connolly

Health Minister Simon Harris officially opened Boyle and Ballymote Primary Care Centres on Monday last, September 3.


The minister’s visit was met with protests from Pro Life and anti-HPV vaccination people from the North West region at both locations.

Minister Simon Harris cut the ribbon at the Boyle facility on Monday morning, before going on to open the Primary Care Centre in Ballymote, Sligo.

The Government is set to bring proposals before the Dáil in the Autumn that will enact legislation following May’s referendum to repeal the Eight Amendment.

Pro Life protestors voiced their opinion with placards against the new legislation, while HPV protestors sought answers on a number of questions concerning the cervical cancer vaccination.

The Primary Care development in Boyle cost in the region of €6 million and opened to the public in January.

Minister Harris said, it was great to return two years after turning the sod on the site. He stated he was delighted to see the new resource there for people with dementia as well as the excellent podiatry facility as part of the diabetes programme.

Senator Frank Feighan welcomed the Minister back to Boyle and said the centre is a “hugely positive development for Boyle and the wider North Roscommon area. It ensures that our local community has improved access to a greater range of health services on their own doorstep and under the one roof.

Minister Harris also visited Plunkett Nursing Home in Boyle.

Minister for Health Simon Harris with Senator Frank Feighan at Boyle Primary Care Centre.

The Ballymote Primary and Mental Health Care Centre was developed under a Public Private Partnership, (PPP) model by Prime Balfour Beatty, with the construction being contracted to JJ Rhatigan.

The building commenced in May 2016 and the Centre opened to the public on January 18.

The Centre accommodates the East Sligo Primary Care Team which covers a population of 11,500 and includes the areas of Ballymote, Gurteen, Riverstown, Geevagh and adjoining townlands.

The facility is part of the HSE’s National Strategy to develop purpose built Primary Care Centres delivering health services to local communities. Services provided at the centre include: Dr. Billy Roe, GP, including Chronic Disease Management, Women’s Health, Men’s Health, and Childhood Vaccinations. Public Health Nursing are providing a range of services including wound management, pressure ulcer prevention, care of older persons, adults and children with acute and chronic conditions and provision of breastfeeding support. Physiotherapy, Podiatry, Dental and Social Work Services are provided for in the centre as well.

A Diabetic Retinopathy services is also in place. There will be a number of multidisciplinary rooms available for visiting clinicians to use including the Community Intervention Team for Sligo and Leitrim.

Pro Life protestors outside the new Primary Care Centre in Boyle were joined by HPV vaccination protestors and those seeking to save the Rosalie Care Home.

The South Sligo Community Adult Mental Health team will offer a number of services at the new centre including Addiction and Substance Misuse Counselling Service, Cognitive Behaviour Therapy Service, Family Therapy Service, 7 day week in house Nursing Service, Occupational Therapy Service, Psychology Service, Social Work Service, Eating Disorders Specialist Service as well as Community Mental Health Nursing Service.

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