9 April 2020
By Bryan Smyth
Aontú Leader Peadar Tóibín TD has voiced great concern with regards new that emergency air ambulance services in Ireland are on the brink of collapse. Deputy Tóibín stated;
“Ironically, at a time when public safety dominates our airwaves and media, a crucial emergency service which saves lives – often in precarious situations – may be let fail and the safety of the Irish people compromised. Successive governments have neglected these lifesaving services and failed to make any provision for the continuation of these services”.
“Presently, there are only two air ambulances operating in Ireland. Yet the Irish Community Rapid Response is on the brink of collapse due to funding. Amazingly, this essential service is a donation-funded charitable organisation staffed by unpaid volunteers – not given so much as an allowance for their heroics. Public generosity has been the source of the charity’s survival, but this is not enough to continue the operation of this essential service across the country. This follows on from recent confirmation by the Representative Association of Commissioned Officers that the sole government-funded helicopter – the Emergency Aeromedical Service – is also on the brink of collapse”.
“Does the government simply not believe that those in remote need, or are entitled, to lifesaving care and services? Aontú calls on the government to reverse this embarrassing state of affairs and provide sufficient state-funding for the ICRR and the Emergency Aeromedical Service – so that remote areas are serviced as well as the Capital”.