Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees
Thursday, 23 September 2021
Public Accounts Committee
Financial Statement 2020 and Related Matters: HSE (Resumed)
Mr. Paul Reid:
Throughout 2021 and, indeed, 2020, our National Ambulance Service and crews have been extremely stretched beyond their normal role as 24-7 paramedics. They have been stretched through their involvement in resourcing and setting up testing and tracing programmes. They have been involved in vaccination programmes. Their responsiveness in terms of nursing homes throughout Covid has drawn hugely from their resources and their responsiveness in keeping people at home and out of hospitals to keep them protected has severely stressed the service in the past year.
Specifically on resourcing, we have a recruitment resourcing budget for this year. A number of graduates will be emerging later this year and will be deployed. The service has a continued recruitment budget and allocation. I accept it has been particularly stretched throughout Covid and more resourcing is required for it.