Denis Naughten TD has welcomed the publication of a letter by Mr. Liam McMullen, Consultant Surgeon at Roscommon County Hospital, which clearly shows that the HSE has failed to provide a safe ambulance service to the people of County Roscommon following the closure of Roscommon A&E.
“This admission, by a senior figure within the hospital, clearly exposes the failure by both An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny and the then Health Minister, James Reilly, to deliver on promises made to the people of County Roscommon when our A&E closed”.
On 30th June 2011 James Reilly TD, then Minister for Health told the Dáil that the “reconfigured” emergency services in Roscommon is “to be supplemented by an additional ambulance so there would be four ambulances covering Roscommon during the day and three at night. I can guarantee that. There will be extra paramedics available with a car to provide cover if all the ambulances are out of Roscommon at any given time. These are services that I can control and which I will deliver.”
He went on to tell the Dáil “The abiding message I want to send from this House today is that I want to replace that which is not safe with something that is safe.”
Denis Naughten continued “I have highlighted in the past, the fact that, every three days the Roscommon Town ambulance base, which provides emergency cover for the majority of County Roscommon, has been left without any ambulance available to respond to an emergency”.
“This has been further supported by the Prime Time programme which exposed the fact that there was a complete depletion of the ambulance service in County Roscommon for extended periods of 2 hrs. on 10 out of 14 days it analysed”.
And an expert in the provision of ambulance services commenting on the Prime Time programme said that such incidents should be rare and that this statistic pointed to the fact that there were “too little resources” available to the people of Roscommon.
“And instead to providing West Roscommon with its own ambulance service, the plan is to move one of the ambulances from Roscommon Town to Loughglynn, leaving the majority of County Roscommon even more exposed in the case of a life threatening emergency”.
How can Government claim that it has replaced “that which is not safe with something that is safe?”
“This is a further broken promise to the people of Roscommon, which is directly threatening lives”.
“Every delayed ambulance, is potentially a life lost”
“The fact is that the ambulance crews are providing an excellent service but they can only do so in a timely manner, if they have the ambulances to do so”.
“I would again call on Minister Varadkar as a doctor to see sense and immediately provide new ambulances and crews to the West Roscommon area, thereby improving the service for everybody in County Roscommon” concluded Denis Naughten.
Political Commitments in Dáil Éireann on the ambulance service
Thursday, 30 June 2011
James Reilly (Minister, Department of Health; Dublin North, Fine Gael) The service was to be supplemented by an additional ambulance so there would be four ambulances covering Roscommon during the day and three at night. I can guarantee that. There will be extra paramedics available with a car to provide cover if all the ambulances are out of Roscommon at any given time.
These are services that I can control and which I will deliver. I do not control the NCHDs at present because I do not know the numbers, but when they become available I commit to their inclusion. People will have an urgent care centre and a safe service. The abiding message I want to send from this House today is that I want to replace that which is not safe with something that is safe.
Wednesday, 6 July 2011
Enda Kenny (Taoiseach, Department of An Taoiseach; Mayo, Fine Gael) From a medical safety perspective, the Minister has pointed out that people suffering from deep trauma, heart attack or stroke have a better chance of survival if they are brought to a high volume centre like Galway. He has confirmed that Roscommon will have four ambulances, with two based in Roscommon town and backed up by a rapid response vehicle with a team of trained paramedics and the advantage of a medical assessment unit. This is in the interest of patient safety. I am aware of the concerns, fears and anxieties that people have but I assure the Deputy that what I am describing is going to happen.
Enda Kenny (Taoiseach, Department of An Taoiseach; Mayo, Fine Gael) There will be additional facilities in terms of the new ambulance crew and the rapid response vehicle backed up by the trained paramedic team. Believe reality.
Enda Kenny (Taoiseach, Department of An Taoiseach; Mayo, Fine Gael)
This was not because of the qualities of individual doctors but due to a lack of range of medical personnel. It is for that reason only that these changes are being made; to provide 24 hour cover in respect of the urgent care centre, to provide improved ambulance and transport facilities, backup paramedic personnel, facilities for access to a medical assessment unit, and transfers for patients suffering from heart attacks, deep trauma, stroke and so on. The changes being made are based on a requirement, a necessity and a responsibility to provide the best opportunity for patients in those categories to have the best level of treatment and the best opportunity to survive deep trauma, a heart attack or a stroke.
Tuesday, 12 July 2011
Enda Kenny (Taoiseach, Department of An Taoiseach; Mayo, Fine Gael –I point out to the Deputy that when I said things will change in Roscommon —–and they will change, I checked the position. I even got the registration numbers of the five ambulance vehicles. There are four crews.
Tuesday, 5 July 2011
James Reilly (Minister, Department of Health; Dublin North, Fine Gael) There will be many other services at Roscommon, including an additional ambulance. Therefore, there will be four ambulances in Roscommon during the day and three at night, two of them based in Roscommon town. There will be paramedics available in a car for Roscommon also.