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New figures show health under-investment crisis of up to €600 million – Jonathan O’Brien TD

2 October, 2018 - by Jonathan O'Brien TD

Sinn Féin deputy spokesperson for Finance and Public Expenditure & Reform Jonathan O’Brien TD has responded to new figures by the Department of Finance that show the Department of Health is facing a funding crisis of at least €600 million.

Speaking today, the Cork North-Central said:

“The Department of Finance have released figures that Department of Health has spent €800 million more by the end of September compared to the same period last year.

“This amount is more than the total increase allocated to the department for 2018, which was €500 million.

“These figures confirm reports that the Department could record a deficit of as much as €600 million this year.

“Despite asking the Minister for Finance for this information in the Dáil in July, and again at committee meetings, his department continues to obfuscate to shroud the true financial position of the Department of Health.

“These figures show incontrovertible evidence that Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil have starved our health services of the adequate investment simply to stand still.

“We have consistently called on the Government to fund our health services adequately. They demonstrably have not.

“The Minister must provide details of the financial position of the Health budget and the effects this will have on Budget 2019.

“It is becoming increasingly clear that the Government’s under-funding of our health services ,together with their plans to mis-allocate €500 million to a Rainy Day Fund, will make the delivery of Sláintecare impossible with further deterioration expected as we enter the winter.

“As Budget day approaches, we in Sinn Féin will not allow Fine Gael or Fianna Fáil to mask the under-investment to which they are subjecting health. The Minister must come clean on his plans for 2019, and whether he can deliver real improvements in our health services next year.

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