June 17, 2020
Programme for Government fails everyone who relies on our health service – Louise O’Reilly TD

Louise OR' ReillySinn Féin spokesperson on Health Louise O’Reilly has said that while she expected little in the Programme for Government from Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil to address our health service crisis, the final document was even more disappointing than expected and will cement Ireland’s two-tier system.

The Dublin Fingal TD noted that the removal of a reference to accelerating the implementation of Sláintecare that was in the leaked draft PfG was removed from the final document.

Speaking today, Teachta O’Reilly said: “We have become accustomed to a low bar from Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil. We know better than to expect progressive action from them when it comes to addressing the health crisis.

“They are after all the architects who have overseen the collapse of our health services for decades.

“But the Programme for Government is even more disappointing than expected. It proves that Sláintecare has become something for Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil to hide behind.

“They are using it as a veil to evade change. They pretend to enact Sláintecare when the reality is that their policies and actions laid out in the PfG clearly undermine it.

“Indeed, reference to accelerating the implementation of Sláintecare, which was in the original draft PfG, was removed from the final document.

“They have given no indication as to how they will implement Sláintecare, they have given no timelines for its implementation, and they have given no indication as to how how they intend funding it.

“This PfG will cement the two-tier health service rather than move towards universal care.

“The document continuously references partnerships with private hospitals and implies an increased reliance on the National Treatment Purchase Fund (NTPF).

“The NTPF scheme is a direct contravention to the principles of Sláintecare. It was developed as a short-term solution.

“But, due to Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil, it has become a long-term measure that deprives the public system of investment and enables the continued neglect of our health services.

“The PfG document fails on primary care, it fails on hospital and acute care, it fails on mental health, it fails on older people’s care, and it fails on care for people with disabilities.

“Most of all, the PfG fails the people of this state and the excellent staff who work in our health service.”

Louise OR' Reilly

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