Sinn Féin’s Maurice Quinlivan TD today said that this government has failed our nurses and midwives and they are not addressing the pay, recruitment and retention crisis in our health service. Deputy Quinlivan was speaking on a Sinn Féin motion that was debated in the Dáil on Wednesday afternoon.
Speaking in the Dáil, Teachta Quinlivan said:
“Every one of us will rely on nurses and medical staff when we are sick and at our weakest and most vulnerable during some stage of our lives.
“The work these people do on a daily basis is incredible and to provide good pay and working conditions should not even be up for debate.
“I always hear stories from constituents in Limerick, as to how impressive and hardworking nurses and health service staff in University Hospital Limerick are.
“Staff in UHL are under severe pressure due to lack of staff, beds and investment, and they try their very best to ensure patients get the best treatment each day.
“They need help from their government, and Fine Gael is absolutely not providing this.
“Just last week, an 85 year old woman, Anastasia Coonan, was left on a trolley in the brand new A&E department in UHL for four days, after being admitted with a suspected stroke.
“That is a horrific way to treat a woman of that age, with a serious medical condition.
“It is left to the nurses to try and squeeze patients onto corridors, in a chronically overcrowded hospital, and left to the nurses to apologise to the patients and their families, when it couldn’t be further from their fault.
“I often speak about the dreadful overcrowding in UHL, it’s the worst in the country, and I’ve called on Minister Harris to step in and address the chaos. Nothing has been done to alleviate the problems there. Nothing. Today 54 people are lying on trollies in UHL. Minister you’ve actually normalised this trolley crisis.
“The HSE is struggling to attract home Irish nurses who have emigrated. That’s not surprising. There is a chasm to be bridged in making our system more attractive to work in, compared to other health systems abroad, and I’ve no confidence in this government doing that.
“Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael have consistently looked after bankers and big business whenever called on, yet left essential frontline staff such as nurses, begging for adequate treatment. It’s a disgrace.
“Sinn Féin would not allow this scandal in our health service to continue. ” Mr. Quinlivan concluded.
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