Dáil debates

Wednesday, 27 September 2006

2:30 pm

Photo of Liam TwomeyLiam Twomey (Wexford, Fine Gael)

The events leading up to the death of Mr. Walsh were tragic, but what is emerging from the report into his death is equally damning of the Government. The report states that the events that led to Mr. Walsh's death still occur daily in the Monaghan Hospital region. The report also states that the consistent theme that emerged was that neither Cavan Hospital nor Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital has sufficient capacity to deal with current patient demands.

On the basis of those findings, I would like the Minister to answer a number of questions. As matters stand, who is responsible for highlighting new or existing protocols? A failure in making known to people the existing protocols contributed to Mr. Walsh's death. Does the Minister know who is responsible for making new or existing protocols known to all staff working in all these hospitals in the area?

Does the Minister know if all the acute hospitals in the country have a programme of clinical governance and who is responsible for clinical governance? Is Professor Drumm ultimately responsible for making sure every hospital has a programme of clinical governance in place to ensure that such an incident will not occur in another hospital? It is important for the Minister to explain to the House whether such a programme is ongoing.

I have two further concerns. On the basis of the Teamwork report, Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital is expected to take all critically ill patients from the north east, but it has received no additional funding to care for these additional very sick patients. It is fine for the Minister to say what she said in her reply and we all fully sympathise with the family of Mr. Walsh, but as a member of the Government, the Minister is doing nothing to stop a similar incident occurring, unless she ensures that additional funding is made available to Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital.

Another matter of concern that reached my attention is that the proposed extension of Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital under the capital building programme has been suspended.


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