“What are the terms of reference of the review commissioned by the West/North West Hospital Group into maternity services in the region? The consultants Health Partnership with nothing more than a virtual office in Dublin will answer no questions and are directing queries to the Hospital Group CEO. Access to Maternity Services is a basic human right. The people of Ireland are entitled to know what terms of reference underpin the activity of anonymous consultants in ivory towers who seem to have the authority to direct the location of health services. The first term of reference for any consideration for Health Services ought to be geographical equality of access. The Minister must direct the publishing of these terms of reference without delay.
“More worryingly Minister Reilly has said a strategy would be informed by ‘national NOT local’ issues. This is not acceptable. Fine Gael and Labour cannot be permitted to secretly pursue the dismantling of maternity services across the North West. The fact that the Minister has said there is no current plan to close maternity services at Mayo General, Sligo Regional and Portiuncula Hospital in Ballinasloe is not good enough.
“The public have a right to know the terms under which this review is taking place and they have a right to know what recommendations are being secretly considered.
“I will be raising this issue with the Government in the Seanad today and I expect detailed responses on the concern being expressed by people in communities across South Donegal, Sligo, Leitrim, West Cavan, North Roscommon and North Mayo. The people have had commitments in the past. Sadly the track record shows the follow through is not as robust as the FG/Lab rhetoric.