12 January 2011

Overcrowding in hospitals shows urgent need to reform the health service - Fitzgerald

Local Fine Gael Senator and General Election Candidate, Frances Fitzgerald has said that the latest figures regarding overcrowding in hospitals shows that reforming the health service is now absolutely essential.

Speaking after figures showed more than 500 people were waiting on trolleys in Irish hospitals on one day in the last week, Senator Fitzgerald said, "After 13 years of Fianna Fail in Government and after pumping billions into our health service, it is clear that the time for real reform of our health system is now urgently required. It is completely unacceptable that patients continue to have to endure the indignity of being left on trolleys in Accident and Emergency Department."

"We, in Fine Gael have put forwarded a detailed and realistic plan to rebuild our health service and, learning from best practice internationally, move towards a system of universal health care where people are treated based on medical need rather than their ability to pay. The money must follow the patient in our health system - and hospitals should receive State funding based on how many patients they treat. This will ensure that the patient is seen as a resource to the hospital and is placed at the centre of our health care system," stated Senator Fitzgerald.

"For years Government has simply thrown money at our health service rather than actually looking at ways to make it more efficient, effective and fair for patients. If Fine Gael is returned to Government in the forthcoming election we will set about introducing the reforms our health service and the public so desperately require," concluded Senator Fitzgerald.