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Sinn Féin unveil all-Ireland health plans

9 October, 2017 - by Pat Sheehan

A truly national, world class and free at the point of delivery health service based on need is achievable in the context of a united Ireland, Sinn Féin Health spokesperson Pat Sheehan has said.

The West Belfast MLA was speaking as Sinn Féin today launched a new discussion document – A National Health Service for a United Ireland.

“Partition has created two different and disjointed health services across Ireland,” he said.

“While, there is greater co-operation in many areas, Brexit has the potential to undermine progress and there remains fundamental inequalities and differences in approach north and south.

“In the North we face the ongoing attacks on the health service by the Tories. In the South the continued model of a two-tier system has failed.

“Our approach is to build on what works in both jurisdictions.

“The document sets out a vision for a truly National Health Service which is free at the point of delivery based on need and funded through general taxation.”

The proposals, which will form part of an eventual White Paper on Irish Unity, include a single integrated hospital waiting list management system, access for all citizens to the European Health Insurance Scheme, an all-island approach to specialist medical practice and recognition of qualifications and standards.

Pat Sheehan said:

“These proposals are consistent with the Future of Health Care Report and with the approach of the Bengoa Report.

“Currently there is more spend on health service per capita in the South across government and private spend than in the public health service in the North. It is clear that a national health care system is affordable and necessary.

“We believe that this can and must be delivered in a united Ireland. It is the right of all citizens.”

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