Local Fine Gael Senator Nicky McFadden has branded the HSE’s failure to provide transport for patients from Longford, Mullingar, and Athlone to the Midlands Regional Hospital in Tullamore as a shameful act of neglect. Senator McFadden went on to say that this move is forcing patients to travel to Dublin, to other hospitals, to obtain their treatment.
“This week in Mullingar I met an elderly lady suffering with osteoporosis who told me she had to attend a hospital appointment at Tullamore Regional. However, because no transport is provided by the HSE for patients from Longford, Mullingar, or Athlone attending at Tullamore, and because it is virtually impossible to access the hospital via public transport, she had to cancel her appointment, for which she had waited a long time. She is now waiting for a new appointment at St James’s Hospital where she will travel the distance more easily to Dublin.
“St James’s is already overcrowded and this disgraceful situation is only making matters worse. It is imperative that patients from Longford, Mullingar, and Athlone are seen at Tullamore and that adequate transport is provided to get them there.
“Many of the patients faced with this predicament are undergoing chemotherapy courses and it is of the utmost importance that they feel comfortable and are not too far from home. It is incredible to think that the HSE expects elderly and infirm people to travel to facilities that are impossible to access without a car. This situation is nonsensical and must be rectified immediately by making transport provided for those who need it.”