Fianna Fáil TD for Wexford, James Browne has said that the HSE is failing the 888 Wexford children waiting for a Paediatric Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) or Otolaryngology consultation.

Deputy Browne was commenting after securing new information from the Minister for Health on the total numbers waiting and the number of children waiting longer than 12 months.

“Worse than the total number waiting in my opinion is the number waiting longer than 12 months. It’s disgraceful that 54% are now waiting longer than a year for a consultation.

“The deterioration in health services in the county must be addressed by the HSE. How is it acceptable that so many children have to wait so long for see a consultant?

“The GPs of these children have decided that they need to see a specialist in order to rule out some concerns or to start the process of rectifying an issue they are suffering from.

“There is a clear lack of capacity in our hospital systems for even basic or routine services. If we can’t get this right, how will be get bigger, more complex challenges fixed?

“Many distraught parents have gotten in touch with me to see if I can highlight the unacceptable waiting times. While I’ll do everything I can to ensure every child gets seen as quickly as possible, that’s not the way a public health system should work.

“The 2018 HSE Service Plan needs to make progress in terms of waiting times for outpatient appointments in this specialism. The children of Wexford cannot be left waiting for these vital interventions,” concluded Browne.