Ambulance service ‘dangerously stretched’ by lack of resources

national ambulance service

TD for Dublin South West Seán Crowe has said that the National Ambulance Service and emergency services are at crisis point, with health care professionals expecting a very challenging winter with insufficient ambulance capacity. Speaking during a Sinn Féin motion on the Ambulance Service, Teachta Crowe spoke of how staff were on the verge of burnout and low morale is rife.
 
Speaking in the Dáil recently, Teachta Crowe said: “People in Ireland are tired of the dire state of the public services that they rely on. Since the days of austerity, funding has been whittled away and, in many areas, we are left with hollowed-out services. Nowhere can this be seen more than in our health service. We are told of all the extra money that the Government is throwing at it, when really, we are standing still when it comes to services.
 
“Waiting lists continue to climb, overcrowding continues to worsen and the National Ambulance Service and emergency services are at crisis point. We spend millions of euro each year on private ambulances rather than on improving the working conditions and strength of our ambulance service.
 
“Our motion calls for life-threatening call-outs to be responded to within 19 minutes. The importance of the golden hour response time seems to have been dangerously stretched when we hear stories of ambulances having to travel further and further to attend to patients. We are increasingly hearing stories of desperate families waiting long periods for emergency responders. Ambulances left idling outside hospitals due to overcrowding is wrong on many levels and leads to unacceptably long shifts. NAS staff are suffering from low morale, as we have heard, and burnout is widespread in the service.
 
“We cannot blame Covid for these problems, as these and other challenges meant that we were at breaking point long before the pandemic.
 
“The Government must urgently review the adequacy of NAS resources. It is vital that we identify exactly what is needed to phase out the use of private services, reduce reliance on overtime, fill vacancies and expand staffing and the ambulance fleet. As part of this, what is needed is to provide adequate healthcare in this State. We also must provide more appropriate hospital beds to avoid patients being left in the back of ambulances and ensure that they are admitted to hospital and treated.
 
“We cannot neglect public services in this country any longer. We need a Government that works for the people, for workers, and their families.”

Sarah Brooks

Sarah Brooks

Sarah has worked in marketing and content creation for many years. In her role at Newsgroup, she is the online editor of www.newsgroup.ie with a particular interest in local news and events. Sarah also works closely with our editorial team on our printed editions in Tallaght, Lucan, Clondalkin and Rathcoole/Saggart. If you have a story and would like to make contact please email Sarah at info@newsgroup.ie.

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