Struan Mackie Speaks Out On Caithness maternity and care in your community
6th June 2017
In The final days to the Westmisnter election Struan Mackie has announced his 'Care in the Community pledge' campaigning ahead of the general election.
"Many voters have asked what my number one priority would be if I am fortunate enough to be elected on the 8th of June. Whilst every candidate will have a range of issues they wish to address as a Member of Parliament... one cause transcends them all for me.
As a Highlander I am incredibly worried about the future of the Far North and I believe that we must provide care in our community as a non-negotiable aspect of living in the UK's most northernly mainland constituency.
We might be an isolated community and in many parts of Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross the extent of how rural we are is obvious. But that isn't an excuse for a depleted service and being a guinea pig for deeper centralisation to Inverness. It is in fact the reverse.
Because of our geography we should aim to maintain whatever care services we can in the communities that we live and work. It is not acceptable to travel 100miles for care that in years gone by has been provided in Caithness General and our other rural hospitals across the far North of Scotland.
Let's be honest, we no longer have a National Health Service; we are being treated differently to the rest of Highland, there is no national fairness in the coverage of services. The SNP have failed the Highlands in their decade of government in Holyrood and NHS Highland continues to duck and dive away from the public backlash that is felt in every corner of the constituency.
That is why today I am launching my final pledge called 'Care in your community'. If elected I will stand with constituents to fight for maternity provision in Wick General, to push for more procedures taking place in our town and county hospitals across the constituency and limiting, wherever possible, residents of the Far North travelling to the Highland Capital for treatment.
When people need help the most we cannot justify travelling over 100 miles for 10 minute consultations or navigating the A9 in adverse weather whilst worrying about the safe delivery of a precious new baby.
We must end the centralisation, we must stand up for our local health service and ensure we bring back the care we need, in our community".
Struan Mackie At Caithness General Hospital