first_imgA shocking one in four beds have been closed across Donegal’s network of Community Hospitals since 2006. Donegal Senator Padraig Mac Lochlainn has slammed the figures.He received the figures from the Minister for Health, Simon Harris in response to parliamentary questions he had submitted. Overall bed numbers are down from 490 to 377. Senator Mac Lochlainn said “These figures are truly shocking. Over the last decade, almost one in four of the beds across Donegal’s Community Hospitals has been closed at a time that our population grew by around 11,500 people (8%). If you factor in the growth in our elderly population, that rely most on our community hospitals, the figures are even worse.“I and my party colleagues in Sinn Féin have repeatedly stated that the cause of the serious crisis in our local health service is the years of underinvestment and cutbacks under Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael governments. These figures are irrefutable proof that we are right.We have also said that this is a whole of health service crisis, from home care packages to our primary health care system to our community hospitals and nursing units and right up to our major acute hospitals such as Letterkenny University Hospital and we are right about that too”.He said that rather than commit to a five year plan of proper investment in our health service to compensate for the years of cutbacks under Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael governments, the so called solution is again and again to rob Peter to pay Paul. “It started with this Full Capacity Protocol at Letterkenny University Hospital that results in thousands of cancelled hospital appointments for procedures and operations every year to get the numbers on trolleys down. Thousands of Donegal people forced to wait even longer on the hospital waiting lists. Robbing Peter to pay Paul.“And now the latest decision to cancel respite care in some of our community hospitals for our elderly citizens. Again to massage the trolley numbers”.“Late last year, I and my Sinn Féin colleagues appealed to Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil who are keeping them in government to change the planned level of investment in the health service for this year. And to then commit to a five year plan to reverse the years of neglect.“We were ignored yet again. Instead we get fake expressions of shock from both parties at the latest scandal in our health service. They know what needs to be done. The stunts and the sticky plaster solutions need to stop”.Shock figures reveal one in four community bed hospitals in Donegal closed was last modified: February 10th, 2017 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img