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“Loss of 700 nursing jobs will devastate frontline health care”

10 October, 2008

"Loss of 700 nursing jobs will devastate frontline health care" - O Neill

Sinn Féin Mid Ulster MLA and Deputy Chair of the Assembly Health Committee, Michele O'Neill has warned the Health Minister, Michael McGimpsey that the loss of 700 nursing staff will devastate frontline health care.

Speaking today Ms O Neill said:

"It clear that the loss of 700 nurses will devastate frontline services and Sinn Féin will fight any attempt to cut these vital jobs.

"Sinn Féin recognise that there are financial pressures on all Departments including Health but the way forward is not to cut frontline services such as nursing jobs, home help services and the ambulance service.

"These are jobs that are essential to the function of a full and effective health service without which patient care will inevitably suffer. I think if you talk to any nurse they will very clearly tell you that both themselves and their colleagues are stretched. To loose 700 nurses is wholly unacceptable.

"Michael McGimpsey as Minister for Health must be more creative and innovative in making efficiency savings. A clear example of this would be to re-engage with pharmacists on the Minor Ailments scheme which could save £8 million. This is one way to save money and jobs." CRÍOCH

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