Louth TD Gerry Adams today raised the issue of care for patients diagnosed with Sarcoma following representations from constituents in Louth.
Teachta Adams was informed that the contract of Consultant Medical Oncologist, Dr Alexia Bertuzzi, who currently cares for over 300 sarcoma patients at St Vincent’s University Hospital, is due to expire on 30th June.
The Sinn Féin President raised the matter with the Tánaiste saying;
“The Programme for Government states that your Government ‘will ensure appropriate care pathways are in place to improve cancer services’.
“Yet I have been contacted by numerous citizens suffering from a form of cancer called Sarcoma who inform me that the locum contract of their Consultant Medical Oncologist at St Vincent’s Hospital will expire at the end of the week.
“These patients are aware that their Oncologist is being replaced but they fear that the required expertise in Sarcoma will be lost and that consequently their medical outcomes will suffer.
“Tanaiste, can you reassure them that this expert in Sarcoma care will be retained at St Vincent’s?”
In her response the Tánaiste said that the HSE has expressed its confidence that the treatment of sarcoma will not be compromised
Following the exchange, Teachta Adams said;
“Unfortunately the Tánaiste said nothing to allay my concerns and I have subsequently written to the Health Minister urging him to retain this expertise and reassure sarcoma patients that they will continue to have the optimum care for their condition. “