Ms Máire Hoctor TD, Minister of State at the Department of Health and Children has today (18th April 2008) opened the 11th Irish Heart Foundation Annual Stroke Conference.

Referring to the recently published National Audit of Stroke care the Minister of State said, "The Audit was commissioned by the Irish Heart Foundation with the support of my Department. It has highlighted a number of areas where clinical care and the organisation of stroke services can be enhanced. I would like to acknowledge the quality of the research by the team. My Department has already met with the HSE to enhance the provision of acute hospital services for patients who have suffered from stroke."

The conference is a multidisciplinary meeting with around 250 attendees, which gives an opportunity for members of different caring professions to meet and share knowledge and experience.

The Minister of State acknowledged the wide range of health professionals involved in the detection, treatment and rehabilitation of people who have suffered stroke. She paid tribute to the work of those who work in a voluntary capacity in providing support to people with stroke. She also thanked the Cardiovascular Health Policy Group who are close to completing their work, which will significantly inform future direction in this area.

Department of Health and Children

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