Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Is she taking the piss?

Sorry for the vulgar post title, but really, they're the first words that came into my head when I read the following, from the Independent...
"MARY Harney yesterday said she "dearly wanted" to return to the Department of Health if the Government parties win the election.

She strongly denied she had been a failure as health minister and claimed her success in improving A&E waiting times was proof of progress. However, she did admit that there were still problems.

Ms Harney spoke after Bertie Ahern came under fire from Fine Gael and Labour over the Taoiseach's statement that health was just a "peripheral" issue in the election campaign.

Ms Harney said there had been recent 40-60pc improvements at A&Es, acknowledged by the Irish Nurses Organisation, and she wanted to reduce other waiting times.

These include the target of a 12-hour wait for hospital admission (set 18 months ago) to no-one having to wait more than six hours to get a bed.

Ms Harney claimed the sight of the sick having to wait overnight for admission had virtually disappeared. There were continuing difficulties "but there have been fantastic improvements in a relatively short period of time".

She added: "There are problems, particularly in the cities, but the out-of-hours service we are establishing will have a much greater impact on A&Es in the future. Ninety-five per cent of those who use A&E do not experience a night on a trolley. The experience of 90pc is good, with 93pc in surveys saying they would go back to the same hospital or recommend it to someone else."

The minister again warned that she was going ahead with the recruitment of 1,500 extra consultants.

On the industrial action begun by hospital consultants yesterday, she said she felt it would be difficult for the public to understand, particularly since the consultants themselves had sought extra appointments in speciality areas.

On her chosen portfolio, she said: "In September 2004, I asked for the job in Health, because I passionately believe we can change health for the better for patients and that all people should be treated on the basis of medical need in our public hospitals.

"There are big challenges in this job. And I consider it a privilege to have the chance to meet those challenges for better health-care for patients. I would be honoured with the chance to finish the job."

The HSE is a shambolic nightmare, patients are being mis-diagnosed, or disreagarded all together because it's the weekened, the nurses are on strike and I for one wouldn't like to be stting in an A&E anywhere in this god forsaken country, if you do need medical help beyond the norm you've got to pay through the nose and go private -like I did when I needed a mole removed- or else wait for up to a year in some cases to be looked at...Oh yes Mary, I'll bet you would be honoured with the chance to finish the job, but frankly I rather hand the position over to six toed tree sloth at this stage.



Blogger Conan Drumm said...

My solution... fire 50% of HSE admin types, thery're shite at their jobs and use up resources that should be front-ended for patients.

Prediction: the pee dees will be down to max five seats this time round. Liz McManus as next Min for Health wd be a good bet as the coalition could go either way ie FF/Lab is a possibility.

11:35 a.m.  
Blogger Caro said...

You left out the whole MRSA issue, on which statistics are unfortunately not available, because they would "frighten people".

11:36 a.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

I agree Conan, how many admin staff are there I wonder? How many are absolutely necessary?
Caro, you're absolutely correct I did forget about that. Of course 'frighten people' = 'cover up' in my book.
It's astounding, we're a wealthy country, or so they keep telling us, how can our health service be so bad?
When I was concerned about my mole my GP told me I'd have to wait almost a year to be seen unless I went private. Now I'm very lucky that I could afford to make a private appointment with a specialist, but imagine the worry and stress a person who cannot afford that option must endure before they can have a procedure that in reality takes less than five minutes tops?
It not good enough. FF and Mary Harney have been holdng the reins on this one for sometime, and clearly it has been a disaster.
I say no way should harney be allowed another crack at it.

11:44 a.m.  
Blogger Medbh said...

Every poll shows that healthcare is of great importance to voters in the election. She should step down but the problem is they never want to do that. I guess that's why Enda made such a point over not seeking re-election if he failed to implement his 14 point plan.

3:10 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

There has been a Newstalk exclusive broadcast earlier, apparently the HSE is to shelve about 100o jobs belonging to front line staff by the end of the year. Naturally this comes on the back of a recruitment drive for more 'consultants' and naturally Bertie claims he knew nothing of it.

7:04 p.m.  

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