The creation of an Irish National Health Service and the hiring of more frontline staff is the only way to tackle that the overcrowding in UHG, where, as of last week, 47 people were waiting on a hospital bed.
This is the view of People Before Profit Galway, who were reacting to figures published by the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation, which showed that UHG is the second worst in the State for overcrowding. Only Limerick is higher with a figure of 66 people waiting.
“We are constantly being told that the Irish economy is ‘booming’ but try telling that to the 47 people waiting for a hospital bed," said PBP Galway representative Joe Loughnane. "This is another symptom of a healthcare system that needs to be changed to put the needs of the people first, along with situations like the cervical check scandal and waiting lists that are growing to ridiculous lengths.”
'From a more long-term perspective, we would also look to abolish the ‘two-tier’ system in Ireland'
PBP Galway are calling for the creation of an Irish equivalent to Britain's NHS as a means of tackling the problems besetting the State's healthcare infrastructure, and, in advance of any such new system, the hiring more frontline staff like nurses and support workers.
"First and foremost hiring more frontline staff will increase capacity in hospitals by allowing them to open up beds they don't currently have the staff to cover," said Mr Loughnane. "From a more long-term perspective, we would also look to abolish the ‘two-tier’ system in Ireland. Healthcare is a human right, and a person’s access to quality healthcare should never depend on the size of their bank account.”