28 Jun 2022

Sinn Féin TDs slam Taoiseach for blaming pandemic on spiralling waiting lists

Sinn Féin TDs slam Taoiseach for blaming pandemic on spiralling waiting lists

Sinn Féin TDs have criticised Taoiseach Micheál Martin, for putting spiralling waiting lists down to the Covid-19 pandemic. 

David Cullinane and Kathleen Funchion have said that the major rise in waiting times came before the pandemic, and is a result of a failed approach in health that over relies on private medicine. 

"The Taoiseach is fundamentally wrong to say that spiralling wait times are down to Covid-19. The major increase from 385,781 in December 2014 to 556,770 in January 2020 cannot be blamed on the pandemic and the real effect of Covid has yet to be felt from a major drop in referrals and other factors related to the pandemic", said the TDs who represent Waterford and Carlow Kilkenny.

"As normality resumes, we will see a tsunami of missed care swell waiting lists further as hospitals are already at capacity. I cannot see how this Government will fix the problem if they don't understand it. The only solution to waiting lists is major investment in capacity measures as we will outline in our Alternative Budget this year", added the TDs.

"That means more beds and, crucially, more staff, as well as major investment in IT modernisation to develop a centralised referral system and an integrated waiting list management system.

The TDs said they will also be proposing a major fund to expand theatre capacity and diagnostic equipment to boost hospital capacity to cut down waiting times.

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