Ciaran Daly spoke to the meeting and introduced himself as a “clinical specialist physiotherapist” who has “worked in this Trust in stroke services for more than 20 years”.

Mr. Daly told the meeting.

“If South West Acute Hospital does not feature as a permanent hyper acute stroke unit then the people of this area will go from the five per cent of the population getting the best service to the five per cent of the population getting the worst access to stroke services and we are not going to accept that.”

He went on to warn that staff who are currently working in the stroke unit at SWAH “would not travel three hours a day to and from work to go to a bigger unit, due to family and other commitments”.

Mr. Daly went on to say that it would be “extremely hard to recruit staff to replace those lost within this area”.

Mr. Daly then said he wanted to speak on behalf of his father who experienced stroke symptoms a number of years ago.

“My father was assessed within minutes by a stroke consultant.

“He had a scan done and as he says, a better service you could not find anywhere.

“His experience is constantly reaffirmed by the grade A score that SWAH receives in the SNAPP audits,” he said before adding.

“My father has read all the evidence related to this consultation and he says the message is crystal clear: time, time, time, time.”

Mr. Daly spoke about how the most important factor when it came to time was getting seen as quickly as possible by an experienced stroke consultant and in addition getting the right imaging to determine the correct treatment.

“It has been said that the golden hour is not a recognised term. Yet in other parts of the UK including London use a travel time of 30 minutes, not one hour, 30 minutes.

“The research clearly shows that quicker access to a stroke consultant and getting the right scans leads to better outcomes, and that is the bottom line.”