Ipswich Star claims victory in campaign for heart centre

Plans for new specialist heart centre at Ipswich Hospital have been announced following a campaign from the local paper, Archant-owned Ipswich Star.

The Have a Heart campaign began in 2009 after it was revealed that emergency heart centres were planned for three surrounding areas without any provision for Suffolk. The campaign was also backed by Ipswich MP Ben Gummer.

Shortly after the paper ran a front-page headline of ‘Why the Delay?”, the local Stategic Health Authority announced the release of £5 million in government funds to ensure that Ipswich Hospital will also have an emergency heart care unit. It will be built later this year.

Star editor Nigel Pickover said: ‘It is a great day for campaigning journalism. We have helped win a huge battle for heart patients in Ipswich and east Suffolk. It has been a dogged fight but our heart campaign has been victorious to the first stage. Now our fight for full emergency facilities – as in Cambridgeshire, Norfolk and Essex, goes on.”

Ipswich Hospital medical director Peter Donaldson praised the paper for their work: ‘I would like, on behalf of everybody, patients and the hospital to thank the Star for their media campaign which has been very beneficial.”

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