The HSE has this week confirmed that a new Sligo Consultant Paediatrician post with a lead role for CSII/Insulin Pump Service in the Northwest has been approved.
The development has been greeted with mixed reaction in Donegal, where Diabetes Care campaigners have long-fought for a fully-qualified Consultant Paediatric Endocrinologist.
Independent TD for Donegal Thomas Pringle said the post is a positive result for Donegal, but speculated that the recruitment will inevitably be met with delays.
Deputy Pringle said: “I am delighted that a new Consultant post has been designated as part of diabetes services in the Northwest despite the Donegal branch of Diabetes Ireland calling for a fully qualified Consultant Paediatric Endocrinologist. While there remain questions to be answered on this the new post will still be positive particularly for Donegal children who currently can’t access specialist diabetes care including modern pump therapies.
“The post has been approved by CAC and will progress forward however this process will inevitably be slow as we’ve seen before with new posts in Sligo University Hospital. Currently the average length of time for recruitment is 9 months with some posts taking up to 2 years to fill.
“The Government has been quick to blame the problem on few people applying for posts but it is becoming increasingly clear that it’s the recruitment process itself that has been burdensome and needlessly lengthy. Meanwhile the deterioration of the recruitment process continues.
“These delays need to be addressed as a matter of urgency with a revisiting of the centralised system of recruitment via the Consultant Advisory Committee (CAC) and the Public Appointment Service plagued with delays and procedural bureaucracy.”
The Government has been slow to allocate funding to facilitate full diabetic care in the Northwest and further posts are outstanding, Deputy Pringle said:
“Clearly this is not being prioritised at Government level. As we approach Budget 2019 it will be an appropriate time to address funding gaps which are derailing approved posts and recruitment as well as the necessary auxiliary supports for full diabetes care services.
“Moves towards a shared ‘Centre of Excellence’ between LUH and SUH for Diabetes Care has stalled despite demand for such a venture. Another Paediatric Endocrinologist is needed at LUH to facilitate the shared Centre of Excellence. This would also facilitate adequate new Start Pump therapy in LUH to cater to all children with Type 1 diabetes in Donegal yet we are getting nowhere with HSE on this.
“I will continue to make representations ahead of Budget 2019 for the inclusion of full diabetes care services to be provided for children and adults in Donegal and across the Northwest. In the meantime I am hoping for a speedy recruitment process for the current new post in SUH and will keep an eye on developments” concludes Pringle.Tags: