Thursday, 13 October 2011
Cystic Fibrosis Services
Kathleen Lynch (Cork North Central, Labour)
There is no disagreement about whether the unit is required. The Senator's language is not the type that should be used. I know people with cystic fibrosis and they have enough difficulty in their lives without listening to that sort of negative comment. There is no disagreement about the unit, which must be built, along with the isolation rooms. We all know what needs to happen. There is no timeline in the reply but it will be done in the shortest possible time. It will not take the ten years it was left to linger by the previous Government. It will come about much sooner and I agree entirely with the Senator that the quicker we get this done, the better the outcomes and greater the result. There is no disagreement in that respect either.
Dr. Barry Plant is an incredible physician in treating cystic fibrosis and his patients consider him a friend. He has a relationship with them that is quite unique because his understanding of their condition is unique. We know what needs to happen and the issue is being worked on. We hope to bring a resolution in the shortest possible time. We are currently in negotiations on sorting out the budget for the next three years because of the mess in which the country has been left. As part of that process we cannot allow projects like this to slide down the drain despite that mess. The process must be completed but the question is how we get the money to do it. I agree entirely with the Senator that any delay is unacceptable but unfortunately there will be a slight delay.