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HSE is in denial on hospital beds – Ó Caoláin

21 January, 2008

The Health Service Executive is in denial on the need for more acute hospital beds according to Sinn Féin Health spokesperson Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin TD. Responding to news that a report commissioned by the HSE found that at least 180 additional beds would be required at Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Drogheda, the Sinn Féin Dáil leader said:

"Under the centralising agenda of the Government and the HSE services are being taken from hospitals at Dundalk, Navan and Monaghan and transferred to Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Drogheda and Cavan General Hospital. To cope with these changes a study commissioned by the HSE itself has found that at least 180 additional beds will be required in Drogheda.

"Details of this report submitted to the HSE late last year are now coming to the light just days after HSE Chief Brendan Drumm again claimed that more acute hospital beds are not required in our health system. Yet we find that in this region alone over 180 are needed in one hospital. We have already suffered loss of beds, most notably in Monaghan General Hospital which has been repeatedly downgraded.

"The HSE is in denial on the need for hospital beds. The Government is almost totally reliant on the discredited co-location scheme to deliver additional beds and there is no agreement between the HSE and the Government on how many are needed.

"Sinn Féin will continue to campaign for the 3,000 additional hospital beds that are required to compensate for cuts in the 1980s and since and for our growing and ageing population." ENDS

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