In The News

Litigation risks contribute to ‘attrition’ in BST obstetrics – IOG

The RCPI Institute of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (IOG) has highlighted “increasing attrition” in its basic specialist training (BST) programme due to working conditions and mounting litigation risks. According to minutes of a spring service level agreement (SLA) review meeting between the IOG and HSE, the Institute noted “the increasing attrition at BST due to the…

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Medical education funding model may be ‘unsustainable’ – IMSC

The model for funding Irish medical education will become unsustainable if international students cannot access an internship in Ireland or their home country, the Chair of the Irish Medical Schools Council (IMSC) has warned Minister for Health Simon Harris. The letter from Ms Carmel Malone, on behalf of the heads of Ireland’s six medical schools,…

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Old radiological machines failing during procedures

An internal HSE document has highlighted the problem of outdated radiological devices ‘failing’ during clinical procedures, the Medical Independent (MI) can reveal. “Reliability monitoring” of radiology equipment by the HSE’s corporate estates section over the last three years has allowed for data to be produced on the most “unreliable” radiological equipment across HSE-funded hospitals. According…

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Sláintecare ‘presents political challenges’

Focus on strategy instead of implementation “too often” means that policy documents and reports end up “gathering dust”, according to the Chair of the Sláintecare Implementation Advisory Council, Dr Tom Keane. Dr Keane, former Director of the National Cancer Control Programme (NCCP), made the comments at the Health Management Institute’s annual conference, which took place…

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Lariam ‘valid choice’ for malaria prevention in military

Controversial anti-malarial Lariam (mefloquine) remains “a valid choice” for malaria chemoprophylaxis in the Defence Forces, the former Director of its Medical Branch, Colonel Dr Gerald Kerr, has said. Dr Kerr, who recently retired from his position, told the Medical Independent  Lariam has advantages in protecting military personnel from malaria, a potentially fatal illness. As Lariam…

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Unite nearing 50 GPs needed for branch

As of late September, Unite trade union was “approaching” the number of GP members required to establish a GP branch, the Medical Independent (MI) understands. In May, it was announced that the NAGP had entered into voluntary liquidation. However, the Association said its trade union section in the form of the Alliance of Family Doctors…

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HSE to inform Medical Council of persistently poor prescribers

HSE data on doctors who over-prescribe benzodiazepines and z-drugs will now be shared with the Medical Council in cases where they fail to engage on the matter, the regulator’s President has told the Medical Independent. Dr Rita Doyle also confirmed that the High Court recently temporarily banned a doctor from prescribing benzodiazepines, following a process…

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Secretary General warned of ‘white flag’ being raised in relation to off-site private practice

The Secretary General of the Department of Health expressed concern that health management was waving the “white flag at a very early stage” in relation to permitting off-site private practice in any future consultant contract for public hospital work, the Medical Independent (MI) can report. The Report of the Independent Review Group established to examine…

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Ongoing safety incidents at children’s hospital construction site

Concerns were raised in July regarding the continuing high number of health and safety incidents at the construction site of the new national children’s hospital (NCH), the Medical Independent (MI) can report. A “safety leadership team” was established earlier this year to reduce these incidents. At its July meeting, the National Paediatric Hospital Development Board…

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Tipp bed delay impacts BowelScreen service

The delay in establishing a 40-bed modular unit at South Tipperary General Hospital (STGH), first announced by Minister for Health Simon Harris two years ago, has contributed to the hospital pulling out of BowelScreen, reveals correspondence from the bowel screening service’s programme manager. According to correspondence on 12 April from BowelScreen’s Programme Manager Ms Hilary…

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