herald

Thursday 14 December 2017

Your hospital crisis questions answered

There have been many patient safety scandals in recent years, but, as the drip-feed of disturbing information has now increased in intensity, the Tallaght Hospital scandal could turn out to be the most serious yet.

We now know for certain that the hospital fell short in its duty of care by failing to give thousands of patients the bare minimum in terms of service any reasonable person would want.

X-rays should be read by proper specialists and referral letters for patients who could require urgent treatment must be opened on time and dealt with by the relevant consultant.

As the HSE launches probes of the major system failures at Tallaght and possible failures at other hospitals, the public will want clear answers:



  • Why did the hospital 'sit' on this timebomb for so long?


  • Why did it let this debacle happen and why did they appear to be in denial about it?


  • Why did it take so long to come to public attention and would it ever have if whistleblowers had not come forward?


  • Who knew what and when and who is to blame?


  • Most importantly of all, do we have a health service that is as safe as it should be and will we ever have one?

The inquiry will try to get to the bottom of what has been a complex controversy, marked by chaos, confusion, conflicting figures and conflicting statements.

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