Health Service is still not working says departing Hiqa head

We all know that there are major problems with our health service – long waiting times, shortage of senior doctors, unreliable ambulance service, cost overruns, withdrawing of medical cards from needy families, etc. We know that some of this may be put down to austerity measures brought in by the Minister for Health. Today we read in The Irish Times in a piece by Paul Cullen that the departing head of the Health Information and Quality Authority (Hiqa) says the health service is failing patients. According to Cullen, Dr Tracey Cooper reckons that ‘the health service lacks accountability, is not sufficiently patient focused, fails to learn from its mistakes and “doesn’t know how many patients it is killing and harming”‘. She goes on to say “we haven’t cracked the paradigm that ‘actually, it’s about the patient, not the people working in the system’.” Cooper also says that there are no consequences when the system fails a patient or, generally, when something goes wrong.

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