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HSE cutting further 800-plus nursing posts

11 Dec 2013

By Lloyd Mudiwa.

 

HSE figures confirm cuts of 804 nursing/midwifery posts in the first 10 months of 2013 alone, according to the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO), which claimed this highlighted the Executive’s “ruthless efficiency” in depleting frontline services.

 

This contrasted sharply with the Executive’s lethargy in ending top-up allowances for senior managers in the same period, charged INMO General Secretary Liam Doran.

IMT (6.12.13) revealed a critical health service shortage of nurse specialists, with the HSE failing to fill 88 key posts in areas including theatre and critical care specialties (ICU/CCU), resulting in a serious impact on service provision.

This latest round of cuts brings the total number of nursing/midwifery posts dropped, since 2009, to 5,133 or almost 13.5 per cent of the total nursing/midwifery  workforce, the INMO said.

The 804 posts represent 53 per cent of the total reduction in posts in the year to date, although nursing/midwifery only makes up 34 per cent of the total workforce.

The INMO believes this proves, despite commitments by the Government and health service management to protect the front line, the current HSE policy is to continue reducing these staff, regardless of the effect on the quality or quantity of care.

The INMO said it now believes the Government, with immediate effect, must restore nursing/midwifery posts to levels adequate to meet patient needs, in keeping with the UK in the aftermath of the Mid Staffordshire Hospital scandal.

 

lloyd.mudiwa@imt.ie

Date: 
11 December 2013

Click here to view the full article which appeared in Irish Medical Times