While there was much talk of the importance of primary care centres by the Taoiseach and Tánaiste during Monday’s televised leaders’ debate, a Galway councillor has accused the Government and HSE of showing “little urgency in providing one for Knocknacarra”.
This is the view of Galway City West councillor Donal Lyons, and follows a Dáil question tabled by Independent Galway West TD Noel Grealish, which showed that the “long-delayed” provision of a Primary Care Health Centre for Knocknacarra is “no longer a priority”. Cllr Lyons has now accused the local management of the HSE of “dragging their feet” and of having “fallen down on the job”.
Knocknacarra was among the initial sites advertised to develop Primary Care Centres back in 2007. While an expression of interest had been received, it did not reach planning stage. According to Anne O’Neill, business manager of the Galway/Roscommon Primary, Community and Continuing Care Services, “the application did not continue to meet the criteria specified for the project at that time”.
Cllr Lyons has asked Dep Noel Grealish to follow up on this with the HSE in Galway, and to demand it “indicates what it plans to do now”.
“The population of Knocknacarra isn’t getting any younger,” said Cllr Lyons. “There were more than 500 invitations issued to the local senior citizens’ party this year — and it needs a place where people can go and have most of their health care needs addressed.”