Children wait two years for tonsils operation

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PEOPLE HAVE got so used to the health cuts over the last ten years that they just accept them as their lot. The situation on hospital waiting lists for public patients is now so farcical that people are being offered appointments two years away. The waiting list for tonsils operations in Crumlin Children's Hospital is now two years long. Tell them that the child is missing a lot of school because of tonsillitis and produce doctors letters to that effect and you will get an appointment in 15 months!

The average waiting time for routine dental appointments for people on the medical card is now three years! A lot of conditions get much worse while people are waiting for treatment and your teeth would have fallen out by the time you saw a dentist if you waited to see the free one.

It used to be £10 a visit in the hospitals and that covered you for everything such as x-rays and tests you needed for that condition. Now it is £6 for every visit even for the same condition and some tests are now £20.

The recent measles epidemic showed what happens when you penny-pinch about childrens' health. Doctors stopped promoting the measles vaccine because they said they were not getting paid enough to give it and the health boards also stopped promoting it to save money. Measles can cause brain damage and injure childrens' eyesight.

A Traveller man in Tallaght who had had two strokes and is confined to a wheelchair was refused physiotherapy and even a walking aid because his medical card was for a different area! Petty bureaucracy is obviously more important than peoples health care in this capitalist system. So keep an eye on those health cuts. You could be the one on the receiving end next!


From Workers Solidarity No 41, Spring 1994
 

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