Three hundred and sixteen workers on sick leave from Galway public hospitals in January/ February

A total of 316 workers were on sick leave from University Hospital Galway and Merlin Park Hospital during January and February.

Describing the latest abseentism figures as “alarming” Cllr Padraig Conneely, the chairperson of the HSE West’s regional health forum, said out of a total workforce of 3,094 people 164 were on sick leave in January and 152 in February.

Claiming it was “too easy to phone in sick” in the public service, especially on Fridays and Mondays, he urged the HSE to take a more pro-active approach to “phone-in” sick days.

“The culture of sick days in the public service is seen as a right and it must be stamped out. It comes with a high cost to the HSE and leads to cancellations of elective procedures at both hospitals.”

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