Don’t Shut Down The Health Service Again – Tóibín
Aontú leader and Meath West TD Peadar Tóibín has stated that he is inundated with reports of critical health care appointments being cancelled in the wake of the new Covid Lockdown. An Teachta Tóibín stated;
“In the last 24 hours I have been told of a man with a clot at the back of eye, rheumatoid arthritis and high cholesterol having his scheduled blood test cancelled and a woman with a family history of Cancer who is waiting for a Cervical Test since September having it cancelled again. Another woman has had her physio and neurologist appointments cancelled again. A child with a disability in need of an urgent operation has had it cancelled. All were told that its due to Covid”.
“In the first wave of Covid the government closed down whole swathes of the health service. This led to drastic results. There are 613,000 people on hospital outpatient waiting lists right now. This is an increase over 60,000 since the start of the year. There are 850,000 people waiting for some form of health treatment. 200,000 women have been put on Cancer screening waiting lists directly because of the service shut down by the government in the first half of last year. At least 2,000 cancer diagnosis have been missed also. While keeping a close eye on Covid cases, the vast majority of which will not be life threatening let us not forget that 480 people will get cancer today. 24 people will die of cancer today”.
“All of this before you take into consideration Heart Disease and Stroke. Every day 27 people die of Heart Disease and Stroke in this state. Mental Health services collapsed during the first lockdown. This cannot be allowed to happen again given the pressures that are now widespread in society. Hospital avoidance was massive during the first wave and it cost many people dearly. Delayed diagnosis means delayed treatment which for many will mean increased ill health and a times death. Covid is not the only illness in the country”.
“While we are entering into a significant Covid surge, it is critical that the government don’t make the same catastrophic mistake that they made at the start of last year. It is breath taking that despite €18 billion extra in the last budget there as been only marginal changes in health service capacity. We in Aontú demand that the government do not shut down the Health Service again