13 January 2000 Edition

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Flu crisis funded


Six-County Minister for Health Bairbre de Brún has announced a £3.3 million plan to help hospitals cope with the flu epidemic. Last week, de Brún pledged that money needed to deal with the crisis would be found. After a five-hour meeting at Stormont, it was announced that funds had been granted by the Executive to the Department of Health to deal with the crisis. The health minister said the money would be spent on opening extra wards and hospital beds, increasing ambulance services and meeting the cost of drugs prescribed to flu patients. ``This funding will help the health service in managing what has been described as the greatest pressure on hospital services for decades,'' said de Brún. ``These are exceptional measures for exceptional circumstances.''

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