Health cuts will worsen trolley situation – Ó Caoláin
Commenting on the record number of patients on trolleys and chairs Accident and Emergency Departments of our public hospitals as highlighted by the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation, Sinn Féin Dáil leader and Health & Children spokesperson Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin said the cuts imposed in the Budget were set to make the situation far worse.
“We have a record-breaking number of 569 patients on trolleys and chairs in our public hospital A&E departments but this situation is set to worsen as a result of the cuts imposed in the Budget. We had over 1500 acute hospital beds closed due to cuts even before Budget 2011.
“The Fianna Fáil/Green Government has taken €765 million out of the public health budget for 2011 and its four-year plan would take a total of €1.4 billion by 2014.
“These figures underline the urgent need for both a change of government and a radical change in economic policy and health policy.
“The four-year plan to savagely cut the public health services must be scrapped. We need strategic and planned investment in our public healthcare services, total reform of the system and delivery and accountability for patients.
“Unless real policy change is delivered we will see more patients on trolleys, far fewer hospital beds, longer waiting lists and the continuing emigration of trained medical professionals.” ENDS.