The Health Minister’s dismissive response to the Euro Health Consumer Index finding on Irish emergency waiting times demonstrates just how out of touch the government is with the realities facing the health services, according to Fianna Fáil Health Spokesperson Billy Kelleher.
Deputy Kelleher said: “The breath-taking arrogance of Leo Varadkar to simply cast this report aside is outrageous. Ireland previously maintained mid-table performance in this index between 2009 and 2012 and then fell to last place under the performance of this government.
“Waiting times for emergency care in Irish hospitals are the worst in Europe. That’s not opposition. It’s a matter of fact. The Minister can’t choose which facts he’ll take seriously and which ones he can ignore.
“Fine Gael and their arrogant approach have caused chaos in the health service. After five years of false budgets and unreachable targets our hospitals are more burdened than ever. Patients are forced to endure intolerable delays in Emergency Departments and Minister Varadkar has now gotten to a point where he calls the widespread cancellation of operations at major hospitals a success.
“It is clear Fine Gael is intent on attacking the vital services the public depend on. Fianna Fáil will invest in public services, increase staff numbers to provide better, safe work environments and restore dignity for patients.”