Sinn Féin health spokesperson Deputy Louise O’Reilly has said the postponing of surgeries for children at the three main children’s hospitals due to winter pressures is evidence of the damage that eight years of Fine Gael in government has done to the health service.
Speaking this morning, Teachta O’Reilly said:
“Reports this morning that the main children’s hospitals in the State have begun to postpone elective surgeries for children due to the pressure they and their staff are under shows the depths Fine Gael have driven the health service to.
“There are around 86,625 children waiting to see a specialist in hospitals across the State, many for essential surgery; 46,000 of these are based in the three main children’s hospitals.
“I understand that postponing surgery is necessary due to how dangerous things are in these hospitals for patients and staff. However, the cancelled surgeries will increase the numbers on these waiting lists as well as the length of time the children have to wait.
“The hospitals are crippled due to a lack of nurses and a lack of consultant doctors across a range of specialties – the Unions representing frontline medical staff have been raising this issue for years, but it has not been addressed.
“The government have rolled out the usual lines that the flu is responsible for the pressure on the hospitals.
“We have had eight years of Fine Gael control of the health service with the last four budgets agreed with Fianna Fáil and they are still surprised by the flu and winter related illnesses arriving in winter – pathetic.”