"It's back to the 1980s as over 700 hospital beds are lost" – Ó Caoláin
Commenting today on the Irish Nurses Organisation survey showing that over 700 hospital beds have been closed due to the cutbacks, Sinn Féin Health spokesperson Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin TD said:
"The closure of over 700 beds as a result of Fianna Fáil/Green Government cutbacks is a measure of the huge impact such cuts are having across the health services. Worse will follow if the Government implements the even more savage cuts proposed in the McCarthy Report.
"On Wednesday at the Oireachtas Health & Children Committee when I challenged Health Minister Mary Harney she refused to rule out the implementation of one of the harshest of McCarthy's health proposals – the means testing of homecare packages for older people. Yet such packages have been repeatedly presented by Minister Harney as an alternative to public hospital care which is supposed to be the entitlement of all citizens.
"It's back to the 1980s when our hospital infrastructure was devastated by cuts and took years to recover." ENDS