Kelleher questions recruitment of nurses from abroad while Irish trained nurses forced to emigrate

Published on: 11 December 2013

In response to the media reports that the HSE is recruiting nurses from abroad, Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Health Billy Kelleher said this “flies in the face of basic common sense while we have hundreds of Irish nurses are emigrating from these shores every month. 

“This further underlines the fact that the Minister Reilly is not in charge of the health service.  There is a lot of taxpayer’s money invested into nurse training and it does not make sense that once they are qualified Irish nurses are being forced to emigrate.  I am asking Minister Reilly and his department to urgently review this policy.”

“The ongoing chaos at the heart of the health service is impacting on almost every area of service delivery.  The HSE overspend this year is €351m meaning it will require a €219m budget top-up this week.  However, when this is viewed in the context of the €666m in spending cuts earmarked from next year’s budget Minister Reilly is effectively attempting to take another €1bn out of health, which has the potential to devastate services.  We do not believe there is any way these savings can be achieved next year without causing irreversible damage to frontline services including homecare packages, nursing supports and severe cuts to discretionary medical cards.

“It’s just three weeks left until 2014 and we still don’t know how Minister Reilly and the HSE intend to implement the €666m across the health service.  Tomorrow’s Health Committee meeting on the HSE Service Plan has even been closed off to public scrutiny now and will only meet in private.  Given the nature of the problems besetting the health services the public deserve more transparency and accountability and not the chaos we see day-in day-out from Minister Reilly.”

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