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Health Minister’s “dynamic contingency plan” does not exist – Ó Caoláin

6 February, 2012 - by Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin TD

Responding to Health Minister James Reilly’s statement that elective surgeries may have to be delayed while the HSE adapts to the loss of staff in the mass retirements at the end of this month, Sinn Féin Health Spokesperson Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin TD said:

“Minister Reilly’s admission is an understatement. The loss of staff at the end of the month, combined with the ongoing recruitment embargo and the closure of hospital beds, mean that elective surgeries will be postponed in hospitals across this State.

“Last week Minister Reilly claimed there was a ‘dynamic contingency plan’ to address the staffing crisis caused by the mass retirements. Such a plan clearly does not exist. The loss of 3,700 staff from the public health services, as well as the other cuts involved in the €750 million slashing of the health budget in 2012, on top of the billion and half taken out of health spending in 2010 and 2011, will further devastate our healthcare system.

“The Government should lift the recruitment embargo and begin a programme to reopen closed hospital beds.” ENDS

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