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GROWING MRI WAITING LISTS PUTS LIVES OF PUBLIC PATIENTS AT RISK – Conway-Walsh

5 October, 2015 - by Rose Conway Walsh


The growing MRI waiting lists in Mayo General Hospital and other hospitals in the West are putting people lives at risk and must be tackled as a matter of urgency according to Mayo Sinn Féin Candidate Cllr. Rose Conway-Walsh. 

Cllr. Conway-Walsh said:

“Vital treatments for public patients are delayed because MRI scanning is not available in a timely manner.  In spite of promises to reduce the waiting times the lists have grown and I now know people who have been waiting over 18 months.  In January of this year waiting times were anything between four and twelve months in Mayo, Galway and Sligo.  Now it is completely out of control and public patients are left to the back of the Queue often in pain and going out of their minds with worry.”

“The question is why should such vital diagnostic scans only be available to those who have money.  One would have to ask are the lives of poor people less important than those who can afford to pay?  Government’s failure to provide adequate resources to hospitals like Mayo General Hospital to meet the demand would suggest that essential healthcare is based on wealth rather than need.  The fact that people who pay can get an MRI Scan within days substantiates this.”

“The truth is the privatization of healthcare vigorously and relentlessly pursued by the Fianna Fail/PD and now Fine Gael and Labour Governments is not a victimless policy.  It segregates citizens and creates an apartheid situation and reinforces inequality in our health system.”

“The front line health staff providing these services are truly dedicated, overworked and undervalued.  Every day they are left to do the impossible job of dealing with patients begging for diagnostic services and treatment while they don’t have the resources to provide those services.  My experience is that they do their very best under unbelievable pressure”.

“Have we learned nothing from Susi Long’s last words “I believe that people should be seen on the basis of how ill they are, of their symptoms, not on how much money they have.”   Susi died from bowel cancer after she had to wait seven months for a scan which was too late to save her life. “

“I am calling on the Minister for Health to immediately release the resources available through the private system into the public system to ensure the same access for those without money.”

‘Sinn Féin will work to enshrine the right to healthcare in legislation, and make this a fully enforceable right in Irish Courts.  We will work relentlessly to establish a one-tier health system.” ENDS

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