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‘Complex’ transfer of disability remit ongoing

The “complex” transfer of policy and funding responsibility for specialist community-based disability services from the Department of Health to the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth (DCEDIY) has been impacted by the pandemic. The required legislation and revised governance arrangements will not be in place until later this year, due to the size…

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109 consultants not on specialist register

There were 109 consultants employed by the HSE at the end of April who were not on the specialist register of the Medical Council, according to figures provided to this newspaper. This compares with 153 consultants found not to be specialist-registered, following HSE site visits in 2018/2019. The matter was discussed at the April meeting…

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Drop in HCV treatments

The number of people commencing direct-acting antiviral (DAA) treatment for hepatitis C virus (HCV) fell to 110 in the first quarter of 2021, a sizeable decline from the same period of 2019 (354) and 2020 (193). The pandemic has impacted access with just 532 people commencing treatment last year, compared to 1,196 in 2019. However,…

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Potential complaints about delayed care – RCSI Council

The RCSI Council raised concerns with the Medical Council and the HSE earlier this year about potential patient complaints due to delays accessing clinical care during the pandemic. Correspondence between the RCSI Council and the Medical Council was discussed at the February meeting of the RCSI Council, according to minutes obtained under Freedom of Information…

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Almost 1,000 reported cases of ‘occupational Covid’ in HCWs

The Health and Safety Authority (HSA) has been notified of 992 occupational cases of Covid-19 in healthcare workers (HCWs) from November to July. However, data held by the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC), covering a similar period, indicates the number of workplace-acquired cases in healthcare is significantly higher. A spokesperson for the HSA told the…

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Voluntary hospitals concerned about new financial system

The HSE is working on addressing the concerns of voluntary hospitals regarding the implementation of an integrated financial management system (IFMS) for the health service, Medical Independent (MI) can report. The Voluntary Healthcare Forum (VHF), which represents voluntary hospitals, has sought assurances that the IFMS will protect the governance and financial autonomy of their members.…

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Underlying culture of homophobia in hospitals

Incidents of homophobia and transphobia have been witnessed or experienced by 38 per cent of Irish doctors and medical students, according to a new survey. The results of the survey were presented by Dr Fionán Donohoe and Dr Maggie O’Brien, who are both trainees in obstetrics and gynaecology, at the RCPI’s LGBTQ+ webinar on 24…

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Malaria testing still under discussion – IBTS

The introduction of malaria testing for some potential blood donors remains under discussion as changes to the computer system are required, according to the Irish Blood Transfusion Service (IBTS). The changes are necessary to ensure that “those donors exposed to malaria are appropriately selected for testing”. Currently, people must wait 12 months from the day…

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DoH defends SUCPU on waiting lists

The cyberattack is expected to lead to an “increase in routine waiting lists” as the HSE focuses on urgent and time sensitive cases “in the interests of patient safety”, a Department of Health spokesperson has told the Medical Independent. The Department’s scheduled and unscheduled care performance unit (SUCPU) is working with the HSE and the…

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Mesh procedures remain paused – HSE

A HSE pause on mesh procedures remains in place until all recommendations of the uro-gynaecological mesh implementation plan are implemented. Eleven recommendations are completed and eight are ongoing, according to the Executive. In July 2018, Department of Health Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Dr Tony Holohan requested that the HSE pause all uro-gynaecological mesh procedures where…

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