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Cavan surgeons decision - Minister should explain

12 January, 2005

Sinn Féin Health spokesperson Caoimhghin Ó Caoláin TD has called on the Tánaiste and Minister for Health and Children Mary Harney to issue a full statement setting out her reasons for terminating the suspensions of two consultant surgeons at Cavan General Hospital.

Speaking today he said:

"This was very unusual in that it was a personal intervention by the Minister in a matter which she and her colleagues would normally deem the responsibility of the Health Boards, now the Health Services Executive. The Minister may have very good reasons for this action but we need to know what they are. I will reserve judgement on the Minister's action awaiting her clarficiation.

"I have called on this Minister and her predecessor to intervene directly in the North Eastern Health Board region in major public health policy matters such as the removal of key services from our hospitals and they have refused, claiming it was outside their remit. These claims are certainly belied when the Minister can intervene directly in a personnel matter such as this." ENDS

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