Taoiseach should intervene in nurses’ strike – Naughten

Local general election candidate, Denis Naughten TD, has called on the Taoiseach to directly engage with nurses’ organisations in order to avoid major disruption to patients.             ‘The nursing organisations have set out 17 proposals on improving services to the public, which has been presented to Government, and this demands a response from the Taoiseach. To date, neither the HSE nor the Minister for Health have been willing to engage with the unions in any meaningful way, and this is leading to hardship for patients and their families. What is now needed is for the Taoiseach to get directly involved in the process and bring some creativity to the table to address this impasse.             ‘This is urgently required, because the current dispute is taking away from the key problem within our health service; and that is the need to focus on patients and not the system. Fine Gael feels strongly that these issues must be resolved and that, in particular, work practices will be a key element in the changing role of nurses which, for example, is going to see nurses prescribing and nurses deputising work to care assistants.             ‘The changing role and responsibility of nurses in all sectors of our health service must be recognised and on that basis, Fine Gael believes that the Government should engage with the INO, the PNA and other social partners.’