HSE redundancy plan shows dire lack of planning – Ó Caoláin
Sinn Féin Health & Children spokesperson Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin TD has said that the Government’s redundancy plan for staff in the HSE shows a dire lack of planning and will see patients suffer.
“Minister Mary Harney and her Fianna Fáil/Green colleagues plan to take 5,000 staff out of the HSE by the end of 2010. The implementation of the redundancy plan in such a short-timeframe shows a dire lack of planning for our public health services by this Minister and Government.
“The HSE is going to be faced with an exodus of staff with no proper plan in place to re-allocate their work. This is not just a cull of excess management and administrative staff. It affects front-line care with patients facing longer delays in the making of hospital appointments and other such essential tasks. The staff at whom the package is aimed have very little time to decide if they will accept it, while remaining staff are expected to take up the slack in a matter of weeks.
“But there is a far bigger issue here. It was generally agreed that employment in the HSE needed to be re-balanced with fewer people in management and administration and more in front-line care. Money saved in reducing staff in management and administration should have been used to employ more on the front line.
“But Minister Harney and her colleagues have dismally failed to achieve that balance. Instead they are carrying out this cull now while at the same time front-line staff are also being reduced, slashing vital services for patients. And worse is promised with up to €1 billion in cuts in Budget 2011.
“All of this emphasises that a General Election is essential to remove this Government which is a public health hazard.” ENDS