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Ferris slams refusal of HSE to meet local authority

30 January, 2008 - by Martin Ferris TD

The Sinn Féin TD for Kerry North, Martin Ferris, raised the refusal of the HSE to meet with Kerry County Council in the Dáil this afternoon. Deputy Ferris was referring to the failure of the HSE in the south west to send representatives to a meeting arranged by the Council to discuss problems within the health services in the county.

Deputy Ferris said, "Last Monday Kerry County Council had arranged a meeting to discuss the serious issues confronting the health services in the county. Despite ample notice the HSE refused to send a representative on the grounds that they were answerable at national level through the Dáil.

"I do not accept this, and it represents a significant withdrawal of accountability at local authority level where elected representatives find that much of their time is taken up with representations from constituents who are having difficulties in accessing adequate treatment. It is therefore only right that there be some form of accountability by the HSE to local bodies.

"The refusal of the HSE to attend such a meeting also raises serious questions with regard to the whole issue of accountability of those responsible for the health services, not only at local but at national level and that ultimately is the responsibility of the Minister and her Department who are only too happy to refer any representation regarding the health service to the HSE." ENDS

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