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Further disability cuts are inexcusable

Posted in Blog by saraburke on December 9, 2013

As budget overruns continue throughout the HSE, the most vulnerable citizens have once again been targeted, but how much more can service users take. My Medical Independent column from 12 September 2013. (more…)

Reilly’ rejects HSE 2012 Service Plan: pure optics and a damage limitation exercise

Posted in Blog by saraburke on January 6, 2012

Having received a hammering from the print media over the holiday period, Minister James Reilly took a media offensive on 5  January 2012 on  RTE Radio with appearances on the Pat Kenny show and an interview with Fergal Bowers on the News at One. In my opinion, these media appearances were a combination of damage limitation and pure optics… (more…)

Reasons to be hopeful for health in 2011…

Posted in Blog by saraburke on December 30, 2010

Despite the hefty cut to the health budget in the year ahead, the HSE Service Plan launched in Christmas week provides some rare optimism for 2011.

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No relief for sickest and poorest in Budget 2011

Posted in Articles by saraburke on December 14, 2010

See here for my analysis of the budget implications for health published in today’s Irish Times, with a few of the bits they left out added back in! And my mega typo corrected…

LISTENING TO Brian Lenihan’s Budget speech, you’d think the health services were going to be untouched by austerity in the years ahead. Although health services make up 27 per cent of current spending, they are just under one-third of the €2.2 billion in cuts outlined, yet they did not even get a mention.

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National Recovery Plan difficult for but maybe irrelevant for health

Posted in Blog by saraburke on November 26, 2010

The 4 year National Recovery Plan outlines budget cuts for health totalling €1.4 billion, 6,000 fewer staff in the public health system and patients having to pay more for essential health care. So how painful will it be in the years ahead for the health services? And will the policy aspirations actually happen given the inevitability of a change of government…

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€50 million HSE West cuts…

Posted in Blog by saraburke on September 30, 2010

How is it after six years of mary Harney as health minister and so called ‘reform’,  the HSE West is scrambling around for €50 million of cuts.

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HSE progress is slow but more patients are not waiting longer

Posted in Blog by saraburke on September 14, 2010

It’s a new term for the HSE, with a brand new CEO, a new chairman of the board and a new progress report. On 9 September, they published their first figures for this year on their own performance. There is some good news, some bad, overall their own figures demonstrate progress is slow.. (more…)

Not cherishing our children

Posted in Blog by saraburke on May 28, 2010

How come we still don’t know how many children died in care? Why is it, ten years on from the publication of the national children’s strategy ‘Our Children – their lives’, we are still listening to political squabbles over the poor state of our child protections services? Quite simply, there is no priority given to children by the State, particularly those who need their help most. (more…)

HSE Service Plan 2010 – an impossible ask??

Posted in Blog by saraburke on February 18, 2010

Ten days ago, amidst the media frenzy of George Lee’s resignation, the HSE Service Plan was published. The HSE Service Plan is the HSE’s most important publication of the year as it is the contract between the HSE and the government which details the type and volume of service the HSE will provide in the year ahead within the budget it is allocated by government. Significantly it is the fifth HSE Service Plan and the last one with Brendan Drumm at helm. In short, it details a one billion budget cut, fewer staff and fewer hospital beds. Delivering all its promises in such a constrained environment will be difficult, if not impossible. (more…)

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Budget 2010: hitting the poorest people and most marginalised communities

Posted in Blog by saraburke on December 18, 2009

As the dust begins to settle on Budget 2010, the real impact of this budget on people’s health and well-being is beginning to emerge. How will Budget 2010 hurt some of the poorest and most marginalised in our community? This blog looks at the impact of the cuts on some community projects and the response of the Community Platform. (more…)

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