§ Mr. McGrady
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what discussions have been held with staff and trade union representatives about the continuing retraction of mental health services in the Downshire hospital, Downpatrick, located in the Down and Lisburn unit of management.
§ Mr. Hanley
The changes in services at Downshire hospital, which are fully in line with the Department of Health and Social Services regional strategy, have been the subject of detailed discussions with staff on the site. The Down and Lisburn unit of management's draft business plan 1991–92, which reflects the Eastern board's response to the regional strategy, was discussed with the Northern Ireland committee of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions on 29 October 1990 and I understand that a further meeting has been offered. Alongside the formal trade union consultation process, three seminars have been held in the last month with staff on the site.