According to reports it is believed that the Minister for Health Leo Varadkar intends to announce that the “cycle of cuts” currently within the health service is to end and he has urged Irish medical professionals currently working abroad to seriously consider coming home.
The announcement comes as Mr Varadkar will address fellow Fine Gael party members at ardfheis this afternoon. It is believed that Mr Varadkar will tell his fellow party members that the period of retrenchment and cutbacks currently within the health service and that has existed since the lasted seven years, will end. Mr Varadkar said he intends to tell delegates: “It will take us several years to rebuild our health service, and we are only just getting started, but the cycle of cuts is over. I want the message to go out from here to our doctors, nurses and therapists in England, Australia and the Middle East that it’s time to consider coming home and being part of the health service recovery in Ireland.”
He went onto sate: “Recruitment of nurses is under way again and this year the number of nurses directly employed in our public health service will increase by more than 500. That’s on top of any increase in mental health nurses.” The Health Minister has also claimed that the Government intends to sanction recruiting in other areas too. Stating: “Now that we have a deal on consultant pay, the HSE was able to advertise 30 consultant posts last week. This is part of the first batch of more than 100, with many more to follow.” Mr Varadkar also claims that he is willing to accept that currently” there remains a lot of things wrong in our health service”.
Although he will strongly argue that there is a number of areas within in the health service where he believes that things are being done well. Mr Varadkar is more than content that hospital-acquired infections such as MRSA, are close to an all-time low. He also intends to point out that:“Medicine prices are falling for patients and taxpayers due to greater competition and tough negotiations. Our ambulance services are improving. We have an air ambulance service for the first time, we have skilled paramedics who begin treatment long before you get to the hospital and are supported by Community First Responders.”
Mr Varadkar will address the conference this afternoon before the Taoiseach Enda Kenny will address his delegates later this evening.