Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Health Billy Kelleher has said “the absence of any specific commitments for a number of hospitals nationwide in today’s report on Hospital Group must raise questions about their future role in our health system.
Deputy Kelleher commented: “While no-one can object to hospitals working together in groups and sharing services there are a number of issues arising from today’s report published by the Minister for Health.
“For example in the HSE Dublin East group while there is a very specific commitment that Wexford should retain its full range of emergency department services, no such commitment is provided for St Luke’s in Kilkenny. We need clarity on this. The report also mentions the absence of consensus among hospitals in the South-East region.
“In the South/South West group, four paragraphs are offered to reassure Waterford. Furthermore Kerry is also recommended to retain its services. However any such commitments for South Tipperary are conspicuous by their absence. Again in the West/North West group the report says Letterkenny should keep its services but says nothing about Castlebar.”
“Now it may be that these are sins of omission rather than commission, but we need reassurances that services at these particular hospitals are safe.
Deputy Kelleher added: “There is a fundamental lack of confidence in the Health Minister’s ability to deliver meaningful reform in the health service that protects frontline services for patients. His record with regard to promises to communities on their hospitals affords little confidence in any assurances he gives now and I will be looking to raise these matters with him in the Dáil at the earliest opportunity.”