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A long awaited renal renal service for Skye, Lochalsh and South West Ross opened at Broadford MacKinnon Memorial Hospital on Monday.
The development follows almost three years of campaigning from Skye’s constituency MSP Kate Forbes and Highlands and Islands MSP Rhoda Grant who welcomed the new service which will serve patients in Skye, Lochalsh and South-West Ross.
Prior to its implementation, some patients had been travelling three-days-a-week to Raigmore Hospital in Inverness, which Ms Forbes described as ‘intolerable’.
‘This is a fantastic day for the many individuals who have had to travel to Raigmore several times a week for years,’ she said.
‘I firmly believe that as many services as possible should be delivered in Skye itself and this is an example of positive change. This has been a very long time coming but it will make a huge difference for those that rely on dialysis.’
Mrs Grant commented: ‘I first became involved in this campaign in 2018, after patients from the Lochalsh area contacted me expressing concern that they had to travel for this necessary treatment so regularly.
‘It’s great news and a great relief that this week this new unit has become available and that these patients will be able to receive treatment closer to home.’
Louise Bussell, NHS Highland’s chief officer for community services, said: ‘This is an exciting development which has involved many months of detailed planning and engagement with patients, staff and the local communities.
‘The service ensures patients in the area can receive dialysis treatment closer to their homes which will make a significant difference to them and their families.’
The new service is being coordinated through the Renal Dialysis Link Nurse at Raigmore Hospital who will be communicating with individual patients.