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‘Practical solutions’ required for HCWs with children during current surge

Solutions are needed to help doctors and other healthcare workers (HCWs) with children during the current Covid-19 surge, Dr Gabrielle Colleran, Consultant Paediatric Radiologist, Children’s Health Ireland at Temple Street, Dublin, and Vice-President of the IHCA told this newspaper.

She said that “practical solutions” are required for HCWs with children.

“As childcare cannot become an additional barrier for those working in our hospitals and mental health services,” she told the Medical Independent (MI).

“We need all the team at work at this, the most difficult time in the pandemic.”

Dr Colleran said that public hospitals are currently “facing an emergency situation”.

“To manage the current surge, we have now had to take the difficult but necessary steps to ensure we get-through this period.

“That unfortunately means rescheduling and cancelling some non-urgent essential care, among other mitigation measures. The public is our first line of defence – each person can help enormously to arrest the spread of the virus and give healthcare workers some space to fight this fight.”

However while highlighting the measures the public can take to support healthcare workers, she said longstanding issues around staffing and bed capacity are having an impact.

“The most impactful measures that would help in the hospital environment would be more staff and more beds,” Dr Colleran told MI.   

“These fundamentals remain. In addition, measures that would help include maximising use of step-down community care to keep people at home and out of hospital.”

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