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Sinn Féin announce details of major health for all campaign

23 March, 2007

Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams today announced details of a major Health for All campaign which will take place across the State over the coming week. During the week the party will set out its healthcare priorities which they want to see delivered in government in relation to acute hospitals, dealing with MRSA, primary care, mental health and drug and alcohol abuse. And beginning at Wexford General Hospital on Saturday 24th the party will also hold health protests the length and breadth of the country demanding action on A&E services and an end to the government's controversial plan to allocate land at public hospital sites to private for profit hospitals.

Mr. Adams said, "Delivering a strong public health system available to all on the basis of need alone would be Sinn Féin's number one priority in government. Over the coming week we will be setting out detailed policies in relation to acute hospital services, the elimination of MRSA, primary health care, mental health and drug and alcohol abuse.

"We will also be stepping up the campaign against the allocation of land at public hospital sites and massive tax-breaks to developers of private for-profit hospitals. In government we would insist that all Government health spending be invested in the public system only. Sinn Féin will be holding protests at all of the sites identified for co-location and will also hold protests at Leinster House and the Department of Health. We will be calling on the government to scrap its controversial plans before the contracts with the developers are signed.

"The government has the resources to ensure that everyone has equal access to health services on the basis of need alone. The problem is that those resources are being put in the wrong places and into the wrong hands.

"Next week we will be setting out our agenda for government in relation to healthcare and seeking support for a range of policy initiatives which we believe could transform the public health service across the country." ENDS

Among the activities planned between March 24th -- 31st are:

24th Protest at Wexford General Hospital

26th Launch of policy in relation to mental health services

27th Press Conference by Health Spokesperson Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin to launch Sinn Féin priorities in government in relation to hospital services. To coincide with this Dublin Sinn Féin will hold a Health for All protest at Leinster House

Meeting with mental health organisations

28th Launch of policy on Primary healthcare

Debate between Sinn Féin and the PDs in relation to health services -- Aungier Street DIT at 7.30pm. Chair: Brian Dobson

29th Sinn Féin's policy in relation to drug and alcohol abuse

30th Launch of Sinn Féin's Health for All pledge card -- setting out the party's key priorities for health if we are in government following the General Election.

31st Countrywide protests in opposition to government's co-location policy

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