Sinn Féin to hold major campaign meeting on the Future of Monaghan Hospital
Sinn Féin will tomorrow evening, Wednesday, hold an important public meeting that will focus on the future of Monaghan Hospital.
Long been an issue of political controversy, Monaghan Hospital has seen several services removed over the past two decades and in many instances witnessed large-scale community mobilisations in response. Sinn Féin have long been consistent in their demand for the return, retention and development of services at the Monaghan town site.
The party will hold a public meeting in the Four Seasons Hotel, Monaghan tomorrow Wednesday 9th January at 8pm where there will be a discussion and debate as to how services can be returned to the hospital. Co-hosted by the party’s local MEP, Matt Carthy, and TD, Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin, confirmed speakers are General Secretary of the Irish Nurses & Midwifes Organisation (INMO) Phil Ní Sheaghadha, Peadar McMahon of Monaghan Community Alliance and Louise O’Reilly TD, Sinn Féin spokesperson on Health.
Speaking this week MEP Matt Carthy said:
“Sinn Féin have been the only party that has constituently articulated a role for local hospital services while other parties have systematically removed function after function from hospitals such as Monaghan.
“When Micheál Martin (current Fianna Fáil leader) as Minister for Health oversaw the withdrawal of maternity services from Monaghan in 2001, Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin was on the record of stating that this would lead to further service removal and that subsequently it would create problems in the larger hospitals that those functions were being transferred to. Unfortunately he was proven right on both counts.
“Since then both Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael governments have systematically decimated Monaghan Hospital services including, essentially, A & E services. This, in turn, has led, as predicted by Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin, to bed shortages and crisis after crisis in other hospitals, including Cavan and Drogheda. In the meantime we had a Fine Gael health spokesperson commit to undoing the damage caused by Fianna Fáil only for that promise to be quickly forgotten once they entered government.
“I am delighted that the General Secretary of the INMO Phil Ní Sheaghadha will address our meeting. Nobody knows better than nurses the devastation that has been caused to the delivery of healthcare by the decisions of successive governments and it is appropriate that the leader of the largest nursing union will be present to outline their proposed solutions.
“Peadar McMahon has long been the foremost community proponent for local hospitals. His insight will prove invaluable to the discussion on the future of Monaghan Hospital.
“For Sinn Féin this will be an opportunity to outline our proposals for the restoration and development of services at our hospital. Knowing that it is always more difficult to restore than retain functions it is therefore imperative that political parties are upfront in terms of the ambition and timeframe for restoration of services. The alternative is that the hospital ceases to operate in any meaningful manner.
“Crucially, our public meeting will be an opportunity for members of the community across county Monaghan to listen but also to contribute to the debate. This is our hospital. It has been robbed of its services by political decisions. We must fight to get them back”.