Sinn Féin proposes new ‘Comhliosta’ system to deal with hospital waiting lists
Sinn Féin Health spokesperson Louise O’Reilly has today presented details of her party’s plan to deal with hospital waiting lists.
Teachta O’Reilly outlined plans for a single, integrated hospital waiting list management system called Comhliosta.
Referring to Minister Harris’ five point plan Teachta O’Reilly said no amount of political leadership can turn a failed concept into a success.
“Yesterday Simon Harris outlined his five point plan to deal with hospital waiting lists saying he will bring a level of political leadership to the problem. Since then healthcare professionals, commentators and politicians have all publicly agreed that this plan is destined for failure.
“That is because no amount of political leadership can turn a failed concept into a success. Minister Harris openly admits that his predecessors have failed on this issue and it is clear that he too will fail.
“Sinn Féin has looked to international best practice in this regard and we have proposed a new single, integrated hospital waiting list management system where people can move from one hospital to another to reduce waiting times. We have called this system Comhliosta.
“Under the current system waiting lists vary drastically across our hospitals. Patients do not know where they stand on the list or how long they will be waiting. People waiting for similar procedures can wait different lengths of time depending on which hospital they have been referred to.
“We want to do away with that. We would introduce a new IT system based on the one in use in the Portuguese NHS which would generate new maximum waiting times by transferring those on the list from hospitals that are struggling to meet demand to those that are in a better position to perform the procedure more timely.
“This of course would have to be done in conjunction with a major programme of investment in our public hospital system including beds and staff numbers which is where Minister Harris’ plan falls down.
“That is why Sinn Féin, in our health policy published ahead of the general election in February, proposed a massive €3.3billion investment in our health services. Others opted for massive tax cuts for the wealthy which is why Minister Harris does not have the money to solve the hospital waiting list crisis.”