The number of consultants employed by the HSE who are not on the Medical Council’s specialist register is a “major concern”, IHCA President Prof Robert Landers told the Medical Independent (MI).
Last month, MI reported that there were 109 consultants employed by the HSE who were not on the Medical Council’s specialist register as of the end of June. The figure was extracted from DIME [Doctors Integrated Management E-system].
Saolta University Health Care Group was the Hospital Group with the highest number of consultants not on the specialist division (29). It was followed by South/South West Hospital Group with 19, then Dublin Midlands Hospitals Group and Ireland East Hospital Group with 12 each.
“It is a major concern for the Association and one we have constantly highlighted to successive Ministers for Health,” Prof Landers told MI at the IHCA Annual Conference on 30 September.
“Consultants should be on the specialist register of the Irish Medical Council, [which] is the regulatory body for maintaining standards in Irish medicine.”
Prof Landers said the issue was “very simple” and that consultants “need to be on the specialist register”.
“If somebody in a consultant position, or is employed as a consultant in the Irish health service and is not on that specialist register, by definition, they are not meeting the standards that the Medical Council… have laid down.”
Prof Landers said it was “a patient safety issue at the end of the day”. “We cannot stand over appointing anybody to a consultant post who is not on the specialist register… it is an indefensible policy for the HSE to persist with.”