Fianna Fáil TD for Waterford, Mary Butler has welcomed the decision of the Oireachtas Health Committee to write to the Minister for Health, Simon Harris outlining their concerns following the hearings on the Herrity Report last week.

Following the public hearings at which Prof. Herrity and doctors from hospitals in the South East region, including UHW consultants, Dr Owens and Dr Doyle, the clerk of the committee has written to Minister Harris to highlight three distinct issues that they want the Minister to respond to.

The three issues were:

  1. Methodology used in the Herrity Report to determine the catchment areas
  2. Commute times between UHW and Cork University Hospitals
  3. Single point of failure situation

“These three issues are extremely important, and which require the Minister to respond and answer the questions asked by Dr Owens and Dr Doyle.

“All three, to my mind, undermine the recommendations made by Prof. Herrity that a second catherisation is needed to ensure that patients in the South East get the best possible care in the event of a cardiac emergency.

“The HSE need to stop pretending that the Herrity Report is the only game in town. The Higgins Report and the recommendations made when the hospitals were being reconfigured in the South and South East clearly identify a pathway, and need, for a 2nd catherisation lab.

“The Herrity Report being discussed before the Health Committee happened as a result of my action. Shouting from the rooftops will not deliver the services we want. Hard word, building the clinical case and lobbying decision makers is what is needed, and is what I’m focused on.

“The Minister must now accept, both the clinical evidence put forward by clinicians working in the field in the area, and the public support, for 24/7 cardiac care in the South East,” concluded Butler.