More than 200,000 children on waiting lists for health care services

HSE figures released in response to parliamentary questions from Fianna Fáil TD

There are 117,000 children on hospital waiting lists according to the latest information from the HSE, which brings the total number of children waiting for public health care to 214,737.

There are 117,000 children on hospital waiting lists according to the latest information from the HSE, which brings the total number of children waiting for public health care to 214,737.

 

Almost 215,000 children are on waiting lists for health care services, according to figures from the HSE.

There are 90,000 children waiting for community health care services, which includes 19,000 children waiting for speech and language therapy.

The figures were released to Fianna Fáil’s health spokesman Stephen Donnelly in response to a series of parliamentary questions.

Waiting lists in North Dublin are the highest in the country, with 2,400 children awaiting speech and language therapy. This compares to just ten children on a waiting list for speech and language therapy in Dún Laoghaire and none in Dublin South East.

There are more than 7,000 children and teenagers waiting to see a psychologist, rising by almost 20 per cent in the past year.

There are 117,000 children on hospital waiting lists according to the latest information from the HSE, which brings the total number of children waiting for public health care to 214,737.

Mr Donnelly said there is a “massive lottery post code” when it comes to children’s health services.

The Wicklow and East Carlow TD told RTÉ’s Morning Ireland on Friday the figures are a “dark stain on the country”.

He added that Fianna Fáil has solutions to offer, such as ending the hiring embargo, equalising salaries for new entry level doctors and the need to open up diagnostic services.

He pointed out that 30 radiographers had been approved for Temple Street Hospital, but that only 19 had been hired. “The funding is there, but they cannot hire the extra 11 needed,” he said.

“Children cannot be allowed wait like this.”

When asked about the timing of the next general election, Mr Donnelly said that it would be “in the next few months” and that “the country cannot wait”.

He dismissed comments by his party colleague John McGuinness who said he will vote against the Government if a motion of no confidence is brought forward in the New Year. Mr Donnelly said that Mr McGuinness’s position “does not matter.”