hospital bed

Unoccupied hospital bed- a rare sight in Ireland’s public hospitals

The Workers’ Party have said that the latest increase in the number of patients on hospital trolleys in Ireland today has gone beyond an emergency and now requires bold and immediate action by the government.

Cork based Workers’ Party councillor Ted Tynan has called on Health Minister Simon Harris to draft emergency legislation to allow the HSE to requisition vacant beds and wards in private hospitals to deal with the extent of the crisis.

Cllr. Tynan pointed out that the state continues to massively subsidise private healthcare in this country with hundreds of millions of euro in tax reliefs and subsidies every year.  The current situation in public hospitals is of such a catastrophic nature as to justify this extreme measure he said.

“Right now we are in the midst of the worst health emergency in the history of this state.  There has been an annual health emergency since even before Mary Harney was made Minister for Health 13 years ago.  In any other country drastic measures would have been taken and it is time for such measures here and now”, said Cllr. Tynan.

“The two tier health service in this country has been created by successive governments and the top tier, the private health sector, has been largely paid for by the state.  It is time therefore to demand access to that sector on behalf of public patients and if the private hospitals are unwilling to provide it then emergency legislation should be moved through the Dáil to facilitate it”, said the Workers’ Party councillor.