631 patients on trolleys the result of eight years of Fine Gael failure in health - Louise O'Reilly TD
Following reports there were 631 patients on trolleys in hospitals across the State this morning, Sinn Féin Health spokesperson Louise O’Reilly TD has said scenes like this are "the outworking of eight years of Fine Gael failure at the helm of the health service".
Speaking this morning as the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) released the figures, Teachta O’Reilly said:
“Today, we had the reports from the INMO that there were 631 patients on trolleys in hospitals throughout the State, the highest number this year so far.
“The number of patients on trolleys has been steadily increasing week on week and today’s figure is where this crisis was predictably heading.
“This Minister for Health and the government will tell us that this problem cannot be fixed overnight – but they have had eight years to address this situation and they have failed miserably.
“In the last decade, there has been a decrease of over 1,100 beds in our hospitals, mainly due to a lack of nurses and doctors to staff them.
"These beds need to be identified and additional staff need to be recruited in order for the beds to be re-opened.
“Unless this government addresses the recruitment and retention crisis affecting our nurses and doctors, these beds won’t be opened; and yet only this week we had the Minister for Health threatening to suspend recruitment of staff and to ban overtime.
“In any other walk of life if someone was this bad at their job they would be gone, however, under this government and with the support of Fianna Fáil failure in public office is accepted and defended to the hilt.”