Wednesday, 27 September 2017
Topical Issue Debate
What I am going to say is in no way a personal attack on the Minister of State, but I am outraged at that response. Telling people who have gone abroad for treatment to Germany - who cannot get a diagnosis here and who are seriously ill - that they have fibromyalgia is outrageous. I thank the people who travelled here today from around the country and particularly my own friends and colleagues who came from County Kerry. If they were in the Chamber to hear the Minister of State say what he just said, they would be outraged beyond belief. His statement is telling these people they are not really sick.
We heard from patients who were told by their doctors that maybe it was a bit of a problem upstairs they actually had. They then went away and got a diagnosis of Lyme disease. They were treated for Lyme disease. The good gentleman farmer we met today, a lovely man who broke all our hearts when we heard his story, thankfully is on the road to being cured. His child's fingernails had fallen out and his hair was falling out. Now he is cured. If the Minister of State were to tell those people that they had fibromyalgia, they would be outraged.
I am not directing this at the Minister of State personally. I know there would have been people in the HSE who had to okay this and it is their wrong, not of the man who uttered it today. It is not his fault but this is balderdash. This is nonsense. This is not the answer to the debate that myself and Deputies Danny Healy-Rae and Martin Ferris wanted to bring to the attention of the Minister of State. It is not the answer.