Fianna Fáil Health Spokesperson Billy Kelleher has condemned Health Minister James Reilly’s handling of the A&E crisis in Roscommon, describing the latest developments as ‘a fiasco’.
Speaking following news that the closure of a 24 hour service is now being deferred, he commented, “Some week’s back, Minister James Reilly made great headlines when he announced that he was firing the expert board of the HSE and taking personal control of the organisation. This latest chaos and confusion about the future of Roscommon Hospital sends a very worrying signal about what this personal leadership is going to look like.
“The Minister needs to immediately explain how we find ourselves in this latest situation. Firstly, we are told that the 24 hour A&E service has to close immediately because it poses an immediate threat to patients. Now, we’re told that a ‘round the clock service must stay open, that it is 100% safe for the patients who use it, and that it has the approval of HIQA. We were told that the issue was that there are no NCHDs to staff the unit. Now, we’re told that the NCHDs can be found to keep the unit open for as long as needed.
“This is a total fiasco and is the direct responsibility of the Minister. By demonstrating that NCHDs can be found at a moment’s notice, he completely undermines the arguments he has been making over the last week and will raise further questions over his motivation in closing the hospital in the first instance and whether he has been telling local people the truth.”