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Crowe points Health Minister towards health crisis in Tallaght

9 June, 2004

Sinn Féin TD for Dublin south-west Seán Crowe said today he is "at a loss" to explain Health Minister Mícheál Martin's failure to intervene in the crisis that has reached catastrophic proportions at Tallaght hospital, adding that it was "staggering" to see how little the Government seemed to care.

Deputy Crowe said:

"The crisis at Tallaght hospital cannot continue to be ignored. We have been reacting with horror at each worsening day of the crisis - 25 people on trolleys, 35 people on trolleys?now 45 people waiting on trolleys is the latest figure. How long will it take for the Minister to intervene or even comment on this crisis? Families are looking for answers and increasingly people are becoming afraid of the possibility of being sick or seriously injured. As an elected representative, I am at a loss to explain why the people of Tallaght are being ignored and dismissed in a country which recently boasted of being the second richest country in the EU. It is quite staggering to see how little this Government prioritises what for most people is the top and often only priority - Health.

"Tallaght hospital is considered a flagship hospital of Dublin yet the numbers of people awaiting crucial healthcare is constantly climbing. Why is this?

There is no epidemic at the moment. Why has Minister Martin not intervened in some way?

"There is a glut of money flowing around in this country and it is not being spent on essential services. People are being left to suffer while politicians swan around the country with electioneering promises. The promises that this Government made regarding health over two years ago ring very hollow now. How can they justify the closing of hospital beds, citing lack of funding, in a time of plenty when the state coffers are bulging? The Minister, and his colleagues, must explain to the people of Tallaght why this is happening in one of Dublin's flagship hospitals." ENDS

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