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Dundalk hospital cut-backs raised in Dáil

23 April, 2008

Speaking in the Dáil today Louth Sinn Féin TD Arthur Morgan called on the Government to explain its decision to cut essential services including Accident and Emergency and ICU at Louth County Hospital. Deputy Morgan said the people of Dundalk and its catchment area are being denied essential areas while there is no prospect of a regional hospital being built for twenty years.

Deputy Morgan said, "The Government must explain to this house why they think it is safe to remove essential hospital services such as A&E and ICU from Louth County Hospital, Dundalk when there is no prospect of a Regional hospital being constructed for twenty years.

"Minister Harney must explain why the people of Dundalk and its catchment area are being denied these essential health services. The people of my county are being put at considerable risk as a consequence of these cut-backs. These cuts represent and absolute and definite threat to the life of many patients in my county while we await the delivery of a regional hospital.

"With no prospect of a regional hospital being in place for twenty years many thousands of patients will be at risk including many who haven't even been born.

"I know that my own county is not the only county suffering from disastrous cutbacks in the health services. Our health services are suffering a death by a thousand cuts and if Minister Harney is allowed to continue with her ideological destruction of the health services under Taoiseach elect Brian Cowen then we are facing decades of second rate health services in a so called first world country.

"Brian Cowen must deal with the crisis in our health services as a top priority when he takes over as Taoiseach. Job number one must be to sack Mary Harney as Minister for Health." ENDS

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