7 January 2016
By Tom O’Sullivan
Cork City (Anti Austerity Alliance) Councillor Mick Barry this morning slammed Junior Health Minister Kathleen Lynch (Labour) and the Government for failing to deliver one-third of the 300 new hospital beds promised in the Autumn.
His criticism came as the Irish Independent reports that 473 patients were left on trolleys in the state’s hospitals yesterday with the highest trolley count outside of Dublin here at Cork University Hospital (36).
Cllr Barry also called on the Cork public to support nurses’ strike action next week as the INMO plan 2 hour work stoppages at 7 hospitals for next Thursday.
He said: “This Government had five years to organise flood defences and they didn’t do it; they had five years to get to grips with the housing crisis and they didn’t do it and they had five years to sort out our hospital emergency departments and they didn’t do it. The latest failure is their failure to deliver a few hundred hospital beds – another broken promise.”
The Government’s failure to deliver the full complement of 300 beds is in significant measure down to a shortage of nurses caused by problems recruiting staff under the current Government pay policy.