98% increase in agency staff spend at Our Lady’s Hospital Navan during the lifetime of this Government – Darren O’Rourke
Sinn Féin Councillor for Meath and local General Election candidate Darren O’Rourke has today criticised the Government for the huge increase in agency staff spend at Our Lady’s Hospital Navan.
Cllr O’Rourke’s comments come in response to figures released by the HSE in a parliamentary question response to Sinn Féin.
Cllr O’Rourke said:
“The huge increase in agency staff spend at Our Lady’s Hospital Navan shows clearly that the recruitment moratorium imposed by this Government on the HSE has had a negative impact on our health service.
“Instead of reducing costs it has led to increased wage bills, reduced services and chronic understaffing.
“The costs to patients and staff in the health service have been high as chronic overcrowding continues in our acute hospitals across this state.
“The figures show that in the over the five year term of this Government, the spend on agency staff has increased from €4.7 million to just under €9.4 million in 2014.
“Despite the spin from this Government about easing the recruitment moratorium, the spend in 2015 is likely to exceed that of 2010 again.
“The truth is that Fine Gael and Labour have matched Fianna Fáil in terms of the mismanagement of our health service and it is the citizens of this country who have paid the price.
“Sinn Féin has shown time and time again that it is possible to invest in our public services and protect the most vulnerable through progressive taxation.
“This year alone we provided for an additional investment of €383 million into our health service, which would have provided for the recruitment of 500 additional nurses, 250 midwives and 250 consultants.
“This contrasts markedly with the approach of Fine Gael and Labour, who has shown again with its paltry allocation of €18 million in new spending for health, that it is the concerns of those at the top and not the needs of patients that receive the most attention from our Government.”