Sinn Féin spokesperson on Health David Cullinane TD has called for the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Health to investigate and examine pandemic unpreparedness which led to the HSE scrambling last minute for ventilators, IT systems, and more.
Teachta Cullinane said:
“A dodgy ventilator deal happened because the HSE was ill-prepared for an epidemic, never mind a global pandemic.
“It is easy to say that mistakes were made because there was an emergency, but we need to understand the reasons why the HSE had to scramble on so many fronts in the first place.
“We did not have enough ICU beds, enough ventilators, enough staff, or enough single isolation rooms to protect staff and non-covid patients.
“The Health Service was chaotic before pre-Covid, and was overwhelmed very quickly.
“The ventilators are just part of it but cannot be brushed under the carpet either.
“€35m is a significant sum of public money, and the retrieval of this along with other issues relating to our pandemic unpreparedness must be examined by the Oireachtas Health Committee.
“We must ensure accountability and transparency as part of learning from past mistakes.”