Investigation into Ministers’ drink driving leak but none into the 1,000 deaths in Nursing Homes
Aontú Leader & Meath West TD Peadar Tóibín has stated; the contrast between the swift investigation into how the details of Barry Cowen Drink Driving conviction made it into the press and the refusal by the government to hold a full public investigation into the 1,000 deaths that have occurred in Nursing Homes in Ireland is very telling.
“The leaking of a story about Barry Cowen to the press, merits an investigation by the Garda Ombudsman by this government. However, in the greater scheme of things, its importance is dwarfed by the magnitude of the crisis that has occurred in Nursing Homes throughout the state. Yet successive Taoisigh and successive Ministers for Health have pointedly refused to investigate the shocking mismanagement of that sector by the last government and the previous Minister for Health”.
“Many families of those who have suffered in Nursing Homes will be gobsmacked by the speedy attention received from the FF/FG/Green Government by a political leak in comparison to the complete lack of commitment to an investigation of what happened in our Nursing Homes. Ireland has had a higher proportion of fatalities in Nursing Homes than most other countries”.
“Nearly 1 in five of the 30,000 Nursing Homes Residents contracted Covid-19. 1 in every six who contracted it lost their life. There was no plan for the entire sector for the whole month of March. The CEO of Nursing Homes Ireland was unable to make contact with the Taoiseach or the Minister for Health as the pandemic worsened. The government reversed guidelines on visitors allowing nursing homes to remain open to visitors for 3 further weeks in the middle of the pandemic”.
“Thousands of patients, many of them possibly high risk, may have been transferred from acute hospitals to nursing homes without being tested in February and March. Nursing homes remained without Staff and PPE for weeks after direct appeals were made. There were massive delays in testing and getting the results back from testing. A member of the Irish Medical Council resigned over the government’s disregard for the nursing homes during the pandemic”.
“It’s clear that those most vulnerable in Ireland were most exposed. We need to learn serious lessons from this crisis and right now. We are by no means out of the woods. We need to make sure that we never let it happen again”