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HSE Failures placing patients at risk – Ó Caoláin

16 January, 2009 - by Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin TD

"The failure of the HSE to re-engage the required level of anaesthetist cover at Monaghan General Hospital places emergency cases presenting at the Monaghan hospital at risk" stated Sinn Féin Cavan/Monaghan T.D. Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin.

The Sinn Féin spokesperson on Health and Children was reacting to the breaking news that at least two cases that presented at Monaghan General Hospital over the preceding twenty four hours "had their care compromised" by the reduced level of anaesthetist cover at the Monaghan hospital site.

He said, "I am incensed that in their haste to dismantle the last acute services at Monaghan General Hospital the HSE has left the people of Co. Monaghan dependent on the presence of three locum consultant anaesthetists. I have learned that over the past 24 hours two patients had their care compromised by the absence of adequate anaesthetists at Monaghan. One patient in need of emergency surgery was transferred to Cavan without an anaesthetist travelling in the ambulance. Another, in the early hours of this morning, had their transfer delayed by up to four hours before an anaesthetist was available to make the journey. This is wholly unacceptable.

"What we need now, to ensure patient safety, is the re-appointment of the five anaesthetist Registrars. This is an immediate and essential requirement. Would the HSE rather that a tragedy would unfold?" ENDS

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