The Cathaoirleach of Roscommon County Council says he will maintain pressure on the HSE in the New Year to try and secure the restoration of dental services for hundreds of children in South Roscommon.
Last month the Roscommon People exclusively reported on the shock withdrawal of long-established dental services in Ballyforan.
When the outgoing dentist retired, a service that had been in place for about 25 years suddenly ceased.
A frustrated Cllr. Tony Ward reflects: “We always had a dental chair there – the dentist served a huge catchment area and was vital for schools. Ten local schools availed of the service, up to 700 children or so.”
Cllr. Ward, currently Cathaoirleach of Roscommon County Council, said the failure of the HSE to replace the retiring dentist was just another example of rural services being withdrawn, by stealth. He’s pointed to the closure of the local credit union, garda station and court services as evidence of this decline.
At last month’s meeting of the HSE (West) Forum, Cllr. Ward asked Mr. Tony Canavan, Chief Officer, about the dental service in Ballyforan.
According to Cllr. Ward, Mr. Canavan explained that the service had not been replaced because of budgetary constraints. However Cllr. Ward says that the HSE has not ruled out replacing the service.
Speaking to the Roscommon People on Monday, Cllr. Ward said: “It’s an unacceptable situation. The HSE did not rule out resolving this issue and I intend to maintain pressure on them to do precisely that in the New Year.”
Cathaoirleach of Roscommon County Council Cllr. Tony Ward.