Cllr. Morris responds to the recent HIQA damning report on the Limerick University Hospital
I am delighted that after several requests by me HIQA have gone into the Limerick University Hospital and confirmed that we have all known since the closure of 24 hour accident and emergency facilities in Nenagh and Ennis hospitals. I feel vindicated by the report despite being accused of scare mongering on numerous occasions by Fianna Fail , Fine Gael and Labour politicians that cared more for votes than the health of their constituents.
The recent HIQA report has stated that the emergency department in the Limerick University Hospital was “not fit for purpose with persistent overcrowding and long delays” It was inevitable from the Hanly Report to the Teamwork report that the Limerick University Hospital would not be able to fit in the patients of the Mid West Region without major investment of the Hospital. (Hanly mentioned 320 million) I warned that the investment would be needed first before services were withdrawn from Nenagh and Ennis but successive Government TDs Maire Hoctor, Michael Lowry and later the u-turn pairing of Alan Kelly and Noel Coonan betrayed the people of the Mid West by buying into Reconfiguration without adequate investment thereby putting their constituents at huge risk due to squeezing the people of the Mid West into a Hospital that is not fit for purpose.
The visit by HIQA was pre warned found 37 patients on trolleys and found that the conditions severely reduced patients safety, privacy and dignity .
The fact that the INMO highlighted the lack of space in the emergency department in 2004 before services were withdrawn shows that the Health services executive and Local Government TDs were playing with peoples lives and should apologise to the people of the Mid Western region for their carelessness.
The shocking point in the report was that the small hospitals in the region were closed down when HIQA used similar terminology like “not fit for purpose”. I am now calling on our Government TDs to do the right thing and demand the return of 24 hour Accident and Emergency services to Nenagh and Ennis until such time that Limerick has had sufficient investment to make it safe for the people of the mid west.
Yours sincerely Cllr. Séamie Morris 08/06/14