Róisín Shortall T.D., co-leader of the Social Democrats, and Niall Ó Tuathail, Social Democrats Galway representative and health reform advisor to the NHS, will address a public meeting on the future of healthcare on Thursday week in the Harbour Hotel.
At the meeting, Deputy Shortall, who initiated and chaired the Oireachtas Committee on the Future of Healthcare, will outline Sláintecare, the cross-party plan for the health service. Niall Ó Tuathail will talk about what Sláintecare might mean for Galway and what can be learned from his work in other countries. There will also be a panel of local healthcare staff and patients to give their perspective on what needs to be done as well as opportunities for the audience to ask questions.
Commenting ahead of the meeting, Niall Ó Tuathail said:
“Despite having some of the most talented and hardworking frontline staff in the world, and one of the biggest budgets per person in the world for health, Ireland has struggled to do what most developed countries have been able to do – provide a decent public health service where everyone is taken care of safely, quickly, and affordably. To discuss these issues, I would like to warmly invite Galwegians who are interested in healthcare to this event. “
Deputy Róisín Shortall added:
“Health reform is a key priority for the Social Democrats. For the first time in the history of the state, we have a cross-party plan for our health system called Sláintecare. It would move a lot of our healthcare outside of hospitals and into communities, and make care more affordable.”
Stating that Ireland’s health service can not keep going in the same direction, Ó Tuathail concluded:
“Our population is growing and ageing, we are struggling to hire enough staff to fill hospital rotas and GP clinics even when the money is there, and we do not have enough services outside of hospital and closer to home. Most of my work is for the NHS in England and Scotland addressing these issues and I want to be part of the solution in Ireland too. I’ll be giving an overview of some of my international health reform work, what lessons we could learn from that, and how we can translate political change into change in the health service.”
The meeting starts at 7.30pm in The Harbour Hotel on Thursday 5th October.