There is deep concern in the Drumkeerin community about the delay in appointing a GP to the local practice.
Cllr Mary Bohan is now calling on the HSE to make a permanent appointment to the Drumkeerin practice as a matter of urgency.
“The HSE has been aware of the vacancy for many months, however there seems to be undue delay firstly in advertising the position. The position was advertised twice and now a GP has been identified and offered the position.
“However, the HSE have now complicated the matter further by firstly informing the doctor that the rural practice allowance was being withdrawn fully, then changing their mind and saying 50% of this allowance would be restored.
“The rural practice allowance was introduced many years ago for small practices that would not otherwise be viable. This allowance is essential to maintaining the practice and providing not only GP services but also nursing and secretarial services,” Cllr Bohan said.
The matter is currently under appeal with the National Director of Primary Care Services Dublin.
“I am calling on all Oireachtas representatives for this constituency to cvontact the HSE and Minister for Health, Dr. Leo Varadkar immediately in order to make this appointment without delay.”
Cllr Bohan asked, “Are the lives of people living in rural areas not as important as those in more urban settings?
“Do people in this area not pay their car tax, property tax, water charges, development and planning charges, PAYE, PRSI, USC, etc, etc?
“The amount of money involved is less than €10,000 per annum. Is this too much to ask the HSE or the government for in order to provide medical services for the people of the Drumkeerin area?” Cllr Bohan concluded.