Donegal North East Sinn Féin TD, Pádraig Mac Lochlainn has called on the Minister for Health, James Reilly, to immediately intervene in the debacle over the extension to Letterkenny General Hospital incorporating a long overdue new Accident and Emergency ward and three floors of modern designed wards above it.
He described the recurrent news of outpatient clinics being cancelled and patients on trolleys as totally unacceptable.
He also called on the HSE to wrap up the legal wrangling over the completion of the Hospital extension and ensure that those sub-contractors owed money due to the collapse of McNamara builders are fully compensated.
Deputy Mac Lochlainn said: “I have given this new Government and the Minister for Health a fair wind to resolve the on-going debacle of the completion of the extension to Letterkenny General Hospital. But three months have now passed and the latest news I have is that the Minister is “too busy” to meet the sub-contractors and the announcement from Hospital Manager Shaun Murphy that the extension may not be completed till 2012 really is the final straw”.
“Today, the hospital has announced that outpatient clinics are cancelled and advised people not to come to A&E if possible. Patients are on trolleys once again. This is totally unacceptable with the long overdue extension to the hospital lying empty and so close to completion”.
“Exacerbating the serious situation at the Hospital are of course on going Government cutbacks which have led to ward closures and waiting list delays for operations that are then passed onto the private sector through the National Treatment Purchase Fund (NTPF).
He concluded: “What is now required is an immediate intervention by Minister James Reilly. He needs to ensure that the necessary funds are released to ensure the completion of this extension and both the Minister and the HSE need to ensure that Hospital management are provided with the necessary financial resources to adequately staff the new wards.”
He also said Minister Reilly also needs to meet with the sub-contractors who have been left blowing in the wind by McNamara’s.
The TD added: “The facts are that one arm of Government, NAMA, was fully aware of the precarious state of the McNamara Empire while other arms of state, the HSE, the OPW and the Department of Education were giving them major public contracts.
“The sub-contractors rightly believed that as they were carrying out public work, the state would honour their payment for work completed. This has not been the case and that is clearly a wrong that must be corrected.”Tags: