Adams Slams Crisis in Health Service

DSC_3254_6510Sinn Féin Louth TD Gerry Adams has expressed his “deep concern at the ongoing crisis in Our Lady of Lourdes hospital in Drogheda and the state wide numbers of patients still languishing each day on trolleys

The Louth TD criticised the “decision of Fine Gael, Labour and Fianna Fáil to block a Sinn Féin motion on the first day of the new Dáil that would have allowed the questioning and scrutiny of the work of the caretaker Ministers, including the Minister for Health, as well as calling for the scrapping of water charges.”

The March 22nd meeting of the Dáil will not be able to hold Ministers to account and to scrutinise their decisions or the work of the departments.”

Gerry Adams TD said:

“On Thursday on the first day of the 32nd Dáil emergency departments in hospitals across the state had one of their worst days for trolley numbers. There were 511 on trolleys. Our Lady of Lourdes in Drogheda had 38 people on trolleys.

On Friday that number was 493 state-wide and 25 in Our Lady of Lourdes.

The crisis in the emergency departments remains undiminished.

This chaos in our health service is a direct consequence of the bad policies of the Fine Gael and Labour government, and of Fianna Fail before them.

Last year 92,998 people were treated on trolleys in hospitals. This is the highest ever number of patients since 2006 and represents an increase of 21% in hospital overcrowding.

The irresponsible decision by Fianna Fáil to close essential services and to downgrade Louth County hospital is a significant cause of the crisis in Our Lady of Lourdes.

All of the establishment parties have promised at one time or another that they will end the crisis in the health service and all have broken this promise.”

Patients being treated like ‘second-class’ citizens – Adams

DSC_3254_6510Sinn Féin President and TD for Louth/East Meath Gerry Adams said in the Dáil this week that the Government is responsible for a health service in complete chaos and that patients are being treated like ‘second-class’ citizens.

Raising the case of Louth woman Denise Tuohy, Deputy Adams said:

“I spoke with Denise Tuohy this week, who spent four days on a trolley in A&E in Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, Drogheda for which she has been charged €75 a day. To make matters worse, Denise’s son Jake has a rare genetic condition, but he doesn’t have a medical card.

“I also spoke this week with Daniel Long, the father of Orlaith – a six-week old baby girl who was forced to wait 11 hours in A&E for a bed at Cork University Hospital.

“Their cases are just two examples of how this Government, led by Fine Gael, has failed to adequately resource our hospitals because it doesn’t believe in universal public healthcare.

“Denise said the nurses are fabulous, but the system is letting patients down. She’s right.

“The unfairness with which citizens like Denise and Orlaith have been treated is no longer unusual. It’s the norm. This Government is presiding over a health service in complete chaos.

“The A&E overcrowding problem is getting worse and patients, including Denise, her son Jake and a little baby like Orlaith are being treated like second class citizens in this Government’s two tier health system”.


Scandalous Trolley numbers – Adams

DSC_3254_6510Sinn Féin President and Louth TD Gerry Adams has challenged the Taoiseach on the state of the health service and in particular the crisis in our emergency departments.

The Sinn Féin leader also accused the government of taking decisions that are intent on privatising the health service and “abandoning the public ownership model of health provision”.

The Louth TD referenced the tragic case of Dualtagh Donnelly who bled to death at his home in Dundalk while waiting for an ambulance to arrive.

Teachta Adams said:

“Last month was the worst October on record for numbers of patients on trolleys. Almost 8,000 citizens spent time on trolleys. They included a 91-year-old patient who spent 29 hours on a trolley in Tallaght Hospital’s emergency department.

“In the first 10 months of this year almost 80,000 admitted patients, were on trolleys, the highest ever figure for the first 10 months of any year since Trolley Watch began. That’s the size of a small town.

“According to the INMO, for the 15th month in a row, October 2015 saw an increase in the level of overcrowding in Emergency Departments. Today (Wednesday) there are 374 patients on trolleys. That is a scandalous figure and the government should be ashamed of its failure to tackle this issue effectively.

“Also in October 25 year old Dualtagh Donnelly bled to death while waiting for an ambulance to arrive, despite the fact that his family home is only five minutes from the Dundalk ambulance station and Louth County Hospital where the A&E department has been closed.

Dualtagh Donnelly’s mother Oonagh said; “I feel my son died because of politicians policies”.

“The President of the Irish Hospital Consultants Association Dr Gerard Crotty has said the cause of A&E overcrowding is a lack of capacity because not enough money has been allocated to deal with it.

“This is a deeply serious problem that the government is failing to get to grips with.”

The Louth TD referred to a speech last week by the Minister for Health Leo Varadkar who proposed that CEO’s of hospital groups should be allowed to transfer management of hospitals to private providers.

Gerry Adams said:

“Mr Varadkar also said hospital groups should be able to conduct business in the manner of semi-state companies “outside the constraints of public service rules”.

These are shocking and revealing comments which highlight the ideological position of this Government which seeks ultimately to privatise our health services, leaving patients at the mercy of a profit margin.

“The silence of the Labour Party in the wake of Minister Varadkar’s Thatcherite proposals is notable.

“The Ministers comments are evidence that this government’s ideological position is about privatisation and that the long term goal of the government is the abandonment of public ownership of our public health service.”