Fianna Fáil General Election candidate for Mayo Cllr. Lisa Chambers says new figures which reveal that more than 500 operations were cancelled at Mayo General Hospital in the first six months of the year as “extremely worrying”.
Figures released to Fianna Fáil show that between January and July this year show that 166 inpatient operations and 349 day case procedures were cancelled at Mayo General Hospital.
Cllr. Chambers commented, “The situation at Mayo General is a major cause for concern. We are all aware of the massive pressure that the hospital is under, but the level of cancelled procedures in the first half of the year is completely unacceptable and emphasises the further deterioration of services.
“The cancellation of operations not only puts patients’ treatment plans on the long finger, it can cause a major upheaval for the patients themselves and their families. Postponement can cause increased anxiety and stress for all involved and will force them to make alternative arrangements. The cancellation could also have implications for patients’ health, by leaving their conditions untreated for longer periods of time.
“There is no doubt that Mayo General Hospital is buckling under the strain. This Government has failed to address waiting lists or trolley numbers and patients are paying the price. The failure by successive Health Ministers to secure realistic budgets for the health service have led us to a situation where patients are waiting years for outpatient appointments, while others are having to travel long distances to access services that were previously available in Mayo. The fact that hundreds of patients are now having their procedures cancelled will add to the burden on an already stretched system.
“Minister Leo Varadkar claims he has secured a substantial increase in this year’s health budget; now he needs to ensure that that money goes where it is most needed – into acute services. The status quo cannot be allowed to continue. Frontline staff are working under extremely challenging conditions, with many expressing serious concerns about patient safety. Instead of perfecting the art of spin, the Minister should concentrate his efforts on coming up with a comprehensive plan to tackle waiting lists and cancelled procedures. As Minister for Health his priority should be patients not PR”.