Longford-Westmeath Fine Gael TD, Gabrielle McFadden, has welcomed the news that interviews commenced this week for the 10 new A & E nursing posts, which are among the 90 extra nursing staff planned for Mullingar Hospital.
“35 of these 90 posts planned for the hospital to help relieve overcrowding are new nursing posts while the remainder is the conversion of agency staff into permanent positions.
“Out of the 35 new positions, 10 are for the Emergency Department, 10 are for Maternity Services and 15 are for across the general service. Interviews for midwifery posts were held earlier this month while interviews for the other posts, including the A & E positions commenced this week.
“The balance of the 90 nursing posts relate to converting agency staff into directly employed posts. 33 of these posts have been converted to date while a further 22 are in process of being converted. Each conversion to a directly employed positions delivers an annual saving of €11,500 per nurse. So, in this context, we are talking about substantial savings for Mullingar Hospital of almost €633,000.
“While addressing the issue of overcrowding long-term is a complex one, addressing staff shortages at the hospital is a priority.
“I want to reiterate again that everybody at the hospital is doing a tremendous job in very difficult circumstances and they must be supported. It is also unacceptable that any person should be forced to lie on a trolley, especially our elderly and most vulnerable.”