News Features

A waiting game for patients

The Irish health system has piloted a number of initiatives to improve patient flow in recent years. Paul Mulholland examines the difficulties in implementing the latest such programme in Limerick and Galway and asks why it is so challenging to produce lasting reforms Patient flow is defined as the movement of patients through the hospital…

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Shuffling the cards for primary care visits

HSE data shows an increasing number of patients are losing their medical cards in favour of GP/doctor visit cards (DVCs). Unlike medical cards, DVCs do not provide free access to medications and allied healthcare professional services. Niamh Cahill investigates According to data from the HSE National Service Plan 2019, approximately 1.573 million people were covered…

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A sporting chance in the fight against concussion

Sports-related concussion has never been far from the headlines. Catherine Reilly speaks to Irish clinicians about the diagnosis and management of this form of brain injury in elite and amateur sport Sports-related concussion can be a complex injury to diagnose and manage. According to the 2017 Concussion in Sport Group (CISG) consensus statement, most incidences…

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Dilemmas when treating children and youths

Dr James Lucas, Medico-legal Consultant at Medical Protection, explains various key pieces of legislation and national guidance that relate to the welfare of children and youths Dilemma 1 The parents of my patient, a 12-month-old girl, are in the process of divorce. The girl’s father, Mr A, has written to the practice explaining that his…

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A pioneering clinician and scientist

Dr Peadar McGing recounts the life and career of pathologist and bacteriologist Dr Edmund McWeeney, who was famously photographed reading the Proclamation of the Irish Republic We are very firmly in the middle of a period of centenaries. These have generated a lot of interest in the history of 100 years ago, including what were,…

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Debating access

A recent conference in the RCSI looked at affordability, innovation and access to medicines, both in Ireland and internationally. David Lynch reports Last month, the RCSI hosted the ‘Affordability and Innovation, Access to Medicines Ireland 3rd Annual Conference’, where issues around the cost and access to new medication were debated by a range of speakers.…

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CPE: An unresolved threat to Irish healthcare

The Department of Health is keen to step-down the official public health emergency on carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) superbugs, but there remains a huge battle to contain and reverse the spread. Catherine Reilly reports The threat posed to Irish healthcare by superbugs carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) is “not considered resolved”, Minister for Health Simon Harris recently told…

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Risky business: Crowdfunding for medical treatment

Priscilla Lynch examines the rise of crowdfunding for medical treatment abroad and increasing calls for Government intervention to protect patients “Please help. Our child/sister/dad/friend, etc was diagnosed with x disease and we need to raise x amount for an experimental treatment abroad that could cure them, as the HSE does not provide this treatment in…

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A question of compliance

The HSE recently introduced a new framework to monitor consultant compliance with the ratio of private work permitted in the 2008 contract. Paul Mulholland examines the new model and data from the first reporting period under the framework The revelation last year that the HSE employed private investigators to monitor the private practice of consultants…

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Violence and abuse of medical staff needs HSE action — IMO

Health professionals, including doctors, can often be the target of violence and abuse. David Lynch reports on a motion at the recent IMO AGM on the issue and speaks to doctors about why the HSE needs to improve the process of dealing with violent incidents IMO delegates unanimously passed a motion on violence and abuse…

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