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Children's ward closed at Ulster Hospital due to staff sickness levels

A children's ward at the Ulster Hospital has been temporarily closed due to staff sickness levels.

The Maynard Sinclair ward was closed on Friday November 11.

The decision was made with senior management and clinicians within the South Eastern Health and Social Care Trust.

All paediatric admissions have been transferred to the Craig Ward.

A Trust spokeswoman said: "The Trust will continue to monitor sickness levels on a daily basis and Maynard Sinclair Ward will be reopened as soon as appropriate staffing levels can be achieved.

"Staff within this clinical area continue to provide a high standard of nursing care to all children and young people with the full support of their managers and the Trust."

UUP MLA Robbie Butler has he would be asking Health Minister Michelle O'Neill to explain the situtation.

The MLA who sits on the Stormont's health committee told the BBC: "I am disappointed that this is the first time that the health committee are hearing about a major ward being closed.

"This demonstrates the lack of flexibility within the system to be able to respond to staff shortages due to sickness."

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