The theme of this year's 65 Roses National Awareness Week and conference is 'Better Together'. It is only by working together that we can improve CF services in Ireland. In recent weeks CFI has met with the senior management teams in St Vincent's University Hospital and University Hospital Limerick (in partnership with TLC4CF). We have further forthcoming meetings with Waterford Regional Hospital and the Mater University Hospital on a wide range of CF-related issues. On 13th March a CFI delegation met with Minister James Reilly TD to highlight continuing challenges in CF facilities in Ireland, including in particular in Beaumont Hospital where 13 inpatient rooms are badly needed for adult patients with CF.
This issue of Spectrum looks back as well as forward. We feature updates on two completed building projects; Drogheda and Cavan, that will make a big difference to CF services in the north east of Ireland
We review our annual conference in Galway 'Better Together' which remains a highly enjoyable as well as informative event. If you missed it, why not tune in to the podcasts on our website.
We highlight the work of CFI over the last couple of years through a new Impact report. We thank some of those who have fundraised and supported us in recent weeks and we put the spotlight on many positive developments.
It's getting chilly outside with winter drawing closer by the day. In this issue of Spectrum we remind our readers to get the Flu vaccine, particularly if you have CF.
We also give an update on the National Children's Hospital, the Fertility and Exercise Grant Schemes, and hear from Declan Houlihan, PWCF, who writes about chasing continents with CF.
A huge thank you to Pat Divilly and Joe Brolly, CFI Ambassadors, who took took part in two significant fundraisers since the last issue – well done to all! We hope you enjoy reading this issue of Spectrum.
It's great to see all the work continue around the country with good progress in the new build CF facilities in Drogheda and MWRH Limerick and work to commence in the next few months in Castlebar, Cavan, Waterford and Galway.
We will also be keeping up the pressure (and fundraising) for the CF 'Beds for Beaumont'. It's important to note the building progress in both the large specialised CF Centres and the smaller regional centres.
This edition of Spectrum highlights some of the events to mark our 50th anniversary. Many thanks again to all who participated in the remembrance and thanksgiving ceremony in the Mary Immaculate Church in Rathmines in February. Judging by the many cards that came into the office since, it is clear that the day meant a lot to the 500 people who attended.
Happy birthday to Cystic Fibrosis Ireland (CFI), which is a youthful 50 years old and many thanks to all our branches, our members and supporters for their fantastic work since we were established in 1963. Along with the Irish Cancer Society and the Irish Autism Society we are the oldest patient advocacy group in Ireland and one of the first CF patient groups in Europe. A forthcoming book on the association will give a good insight into how CFI came to be formed and some of our impact over the past five decades. The work of our members and the dedicated doctors and their teams is a story worth telling.