Independent TD Mattie McGrath has called on the Minister for Health Simon Harris to assert more ministerial authority over the HSE with respect to the ongoing national trolley crisis. Deputy McGrath was speaking as South Tipperary General Hospital (STGH) continues to operate under the HSE Full Capacity Protocol for the twelfth consistent month in a row:
“There is a growing sense that Minister Harris is far too deferential to top management in the HSE and that he is not adequately prepared to challenge them over what needs to be done.
I know myself from when he visited Our Lady’s Hospital in Cashel recently that he was excessively concerned with not stepping on the toes of those in the HSE or in HIQA.
He was astonished at the quality of the facility and yet seemed totally unprepared to over-ride the HSE decision to keep it a patient free zone.
That attitude needs to change if we are to have any hope of addressing this trolley crisis.
The whole country can see there is absolute bedlam in our A&E Departments and yet the Minister refuses to call it a national emergency.
Who is he afraid of upsetting and why?
Clearly not the public who have to endure this utter madness in our hospitals with bewildering consistency.
The HSE top management has proven they are a significant part of the problem. Deferring to them for solutions is therefore not the greatest idea.
Minister Harris needs to display real political courage here.
It is a very bad state of affairs when we have a senior consultant from one of the states biggest hospitals saying on RTE 6.1 News that he does not believe Minister Harris or the HSE have the wherewithal to solve this crisis.
Minister Harris urgently needs to avoid being captured by a HSE management mentality that is serving no one but the HSE management who promote it,” concluded Deputy McGrath.