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Burke urges HSE to reverse decision not to publish NCHD vacancies

2nd July 2013 - Colm Burke TD

Fine Gael Cork North Central Senator and Seanad Spokesperson on Health, Colm Burke, today (Friday) urged the HSE to reverse a recent decision to stop collating daily and weekly Non Consultant Hospital Doctors (NCHD) vacancy figures, saying it will compound the trend of Irish medical graduates going abroad to find work.


In response to questions raised by Senator Burke at a recent meeting of the Oireachtas Health Committee, the HSE has advised that ‘it instead uses a number of mechanisms to identify which hospitals and specialities are experiencing recruitment challenges’.


“This decision by the HSE to change the mechanism of recording vacant NCHD posts extremely concerning and is likely to further compound the exodus of Irish trained doctors from the Irish health system which has developed as a trend in recent years.


“The HSE has in the past experienced difficulties in filling Senior House officer posts, and this year there has been a growing problem in the filling of Registrar positions in many hospitals.


“The HSE fails to realise a very simple fact; the terms and working conditions, training programmes and professional development of Irish hospital doctors must compare with those in other English speaking countries. If the current trend continues the majority of Irish hospital doctors post internship year will not be Irish medical graduates.


“The HSE must finally begin a process of genuine and transparent engagement with the various stakeholders to resolve the on-going recruitment shortages. This cannot be achieved without full disclosure on the mechanisms of recording hospital vacancies. It is simply not possible to properly address these shortages without knowing the measure of what we are dealing with.


“The human resources policies currently being pursued by the HSE are putting at risk the quality of care being provided in Irish hospitals and are placing an undue burden upon staff. Frankly, Irish medical graduates deserve a better deal.”

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