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Sláintecare progress continues with ‘core group of staff’ during Covid-19

By Mindo - 26th Mar 2020

Progress with Sláintecare continues despite the Covid-19 pandemic, this newspaper has been told. However the Department of Health said that a number of staff in the Sláintecare Programme Office have been moved to work directly on Covid-19 matters.

The Medical Independent (MI) asked the Department whether progress on the plan had halted because of the Covid-19 pandemic.  

“Along with other public sector staff, members of the Sláintecare team are working to support Covid-19 work,” the Department spokesperson told MI on 25 March.

 “A core group of staff continues to work on Sláintecare priorities, with a particular focus on areas which can fast-track the health system response to Covid-19.”

Sláintecare is the cross-party, ten-year plan for major transformation of the Irish health service.

The Department told this newspaper in February that there are currently 18 members of staff working in the Sláintecare Implementation Office.

Speaking to MI at the National Health Summit at Croke Park in February , Ms Laura Magahy, Director of the Sláintecare Programme Office, said that her office was adequately staffed to lead the implementation of the 10-year plan.

Separately, the IHCA told this newspaper on Tuesday (24 March)  that its AGM is “still scheduled for Saturday 19 September at this point.” The conference is due to take place in the Radisson, Stillorgan, Dublin.

Today (26 March) the ICGP said its annual conference and AGM, due to be held in May 2020, has been postponed until November 2020.

Earlier this month, the IMO announced its decision to postpone the forthcoming AGM in light of the evolving Covid-19 situation. 

The AGM was due to be held in Killarney next month (16-19 April). It is one of the key events in the IMO calendar and is attended each year by hundreds of doctors from different specialties across the country.  

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