Sligo éirígí activist Gerry Casey has slammed the Health Service Executive (HSE) and their political masters in the Fianna Fail led administration after it emerged that the HSE are planning major cutbacks in the numbers of people employed by them in essential front-line or support services such as nursing. He also rubbished claims by the HSE that these cuts would not effect front line services.
Casey said: “The HSE have decided not to renew somewhere in the region of 14,000 temporary contracts and 3,000 locum contracts of employees who carry out essential front-line or support services, including nursing. According to the Irish Nurses Organisation (INO), that will mean the loss of probably 300 to 400 nurses here in the Northwest alone.”
He added: “Claims by the HSE that front line services will not be effected by these job losses are complete rubbish. This is a major blow to an already under pressure and under resourced health service and is set to have major repercussions for people in need of vital services as well as patient safety.”
“This Fianna Fail led administration has repeatedly shown a callous disregard for the health and well being of the people of this region. Patient safety and well-being must not be made to suffer or pay for the greed and incompetence of the politicians, developers and bankers that have squandered the wealth of the Celtic Tiger. These latest cutbacks are, once again, the actions of an administration that has completely failed the people they claim to represent. ”
He concluded: “They must reverse these cutbacks and abandon completely their failed policies of a two–tier system and privatisation of health care, all of which is based on a failed right wing ideology. Their system has failed but there is a clear, workable and just alternative. What is now needed more than ever is the building of a first class health service that is truly free and equal, based on medical need and not ability to pay."