Singer backs lifesaving screening


Singer backs lifesaving screening

Well-know Laois singer Damien Bowe has thrown his weight behind a fundraiser to help prevent a health condition which has had a tragic impact on his family.

A fundraising Gala ball will take place on Saturday, April 9 in the Abbeyleix Manor Hotel in aid of the Mater Hospital Foundation’s Heart Appeal.

Damien Bowe’s brother Michael tragically passed away from a heart condition in 2004, and his family have therefore been screened at the Family Heart Screening Clinic funded by the Mater Hospital Foundation.

Damien has suffered the loss of a loved one but also seen a similar tragic loss avoided.

“My family have gone through the heart ache of losing a loved one to SADS, however there is hope that others can be saved. My other brother is one such example, as the clinic uncovered a heart condition in him that is now being treated.

“I believe in this cause deeply, and want to spare other families the grief of losing a loved one if at all possible,” Damien said.

The Mater Hospital Foundation runs its Heart Appeal annually throughout February in the hope of raising in excess of €300,000 to run the Family Heart Screening Clinic at the Mater Hospital. This year the clinic began screening children for the first time.

Dr Galvin, commenting on the need to raise funds for this vital service said, “When you have a family history of sudden cardiac death, you need family screening. By conducting the screening for the whole family in one location there are benefits of shared knowledge and information. It also makes decision-making immediate and avoids the need for several clinic appointments for the family”

The Family Heart Screen Clinic receives no government funding and depends entirely on the generosity of the public. To date 1,170 families have been screened which equates to over 7,000 patients. This year donations to The Mater Heart Appeal, which is the Mater Hospital Foundation’s longest running appeal, can be made online at, by texting SADS to 50300 or calling the office on 01 830 3482.

For more information contact the Mater Foundation on 01 830 3482 or email

Tickets for the ball are available from the Abbeyleix Manor Hotel phone 057-8730111 and are €40 per person. The Secrets will perform on the night and Maria Walsh the 2014 Rose of Tralee will be MC.