Waiting lists reach 556,411 despite solution staring Harris in the face - Louise O'Reilly TD
Speaking this evening after the release of the hospital waiting list figures for May, Sinn Féin health spokesperson Deputy Louise O’Reilly said there is a solution staring the Minister for Health in the face.
Teachta O’Reilly said:
“The latest figures released by the National Treatment Purchase Fund reveal there are now up to 556,411 people, up over 4,000 on last month, waiting for an outpatient appointment in hospitals across the State.
“106,145 of those are waiting 18 months or more.
“These figures are a monthly reminder of how many people are suffering across the State and also underlines the incompetence of the Government when it comes to dealing with this issue.
“However, a significant contribution to resolving this crisis can be made by the introduction of an integrated waiting list system which essentially pools the country's hospital waiting lists.
“Such a system which pools the waiting lists and maximises the resources we have in the health service would allow patients to transfer from hospitals with long lists, to those with shorter waiting times.
“It means that people on long waiting lists at certain hospitals would go to the nearest available hospital which has the capacity to do that procedure – it makes complete sense and we know it works in other countries and it also works here, in the RCSI Hospitals Group.
“This system works, we have been calling for its implementation for years, the Minister needs to take the initiative and pilot this on a national basis.”