Finbarr Filan RENUA Ireland candidate in the Sligo Leitrim West Cavan South Donegal stated there have been ample reports on the problems in the health sector in Ireland.
What is needed now is practical action and tough decisions to deal with problems and implement solutions which are known and have been known for a very long time.
The main failure, as noted in the section on Public Sector reform, is Irelandís inability to respond to crises.
But whilst the health sector is not perfect it is hugely resilient hand has shown an appetite and capacity for reform under progressive leadership.
Mr Filan is proposing a National Health Forum, modelled on the New Ireland Forum to generate a permanent national dialogue with all stakeholders in the sector.
The Forum will be politically driven and managed to ensure it does not deteriorate into another talking shop.
This Forum will consist of the HSE (or its equivalent), the Department of Health, politicians from all sides, civil servants, unions, professionals, medical and healthcare businesses, pharmaceutical manufacturers, independent researchers of note (a mix of national and international) and patient groups.
The Forumís full report will need to be completed within six months, with the list of recommendations being made public. The remit of the forum in establishing the priorities for the system will be as follows:
∑ To agree on all policy initiatives in the field of publicly and privately funded healthcare before
the proposals are presented to the Oireachtas Committee on Health (which acts as its link to
the Executive in line with our proposals for enhanced roles for parliamentary committees);
∑ To develop and agree five and ten year plans for healthcare management across the system.
RENUA Ireland sees the National Health Forum as the only realistic way by which the engagement and buy-in necessary can be garnered.
There has been enough change, now a system has to be backed.
RENUA Ireland will support the Hospital Trusts and promote independence and competition between them to drive costs down. GPs will play a central role in helping this happen;