Today’s Irish Daily Mail cover



Last night.

On RTÉ’s Prime Time.

The Minister for Health Simon Harris was interviewed by presenter Miriam O’Callaghan about the August 27, 2018 memo he released last night which showed he was told of a €391million potential cost overrun related to the building of the National Children’s Hospital but didn’t inform the Minister for Public Expenditure until November 2018.

He was also asked about the nurses’ strike.

Towards the end of their interview Ms O’Callaghan asked him if he had moved his position on the nurses calls related to pay and retention of staff “one iota” since the strikes began.

He said he thinks both sides need to move their positions, to resolve the matter, but added the following caveat:

But it has to be in the confines of the [public sector pay] agreement. Or you’ll have me sitting in this seat next week asking me about a different group. It’s about finding common ground and I’m very confident we can do that.”

Watch back in full here.


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11 thoughts on “Abysmal

  1. kellMA

    I mean, he is right. If they move then it will be a case of how long until the next group BUT the fact is that these people are struggling on what they earn/we cannot attract enough talent to these positions because of the salary/cost of living dynamic we have in Ireland. And I can see why just hoofing money over may, in the grand scheme of things, make things worse, but the status quo is also not going to address the issue and the fact is there is an issue there. I don’t know the silver bullet, there isn’t one usually. Its a collection of issues; housing no doubt being a big one and it is clear that we are not making enough movement there either. It is just too expensive to have a roof over your head today and that just has to change or more bits of the machine will grind to a halt.

    1. Cian

      Yes, so any extra cash the government has should go towards dropping the cost of living… which for most people is mostly the cost of housing (for some childcare is a big issue too).. and this will help everyone (including the nurses)

      1. Mel

        I see no evidence that the Government are interested in lowering the cost of housing Cian. Can you provide any examples?
        All I see is more money sucked out of the real economy by way of rents and mortgages.

  2. phil

    This is an ideal opportunity to change the health service to a 7 day week service, I would really hope that when the government eventually caves that they we get something in return …

    Might also be a useful time for the government to stop collecting union subs for the unions at source. the Ambulance drivers want this , and I think it would be good for the unions too..

  3. Eoin

    Of course people will die because of the nurses’ strike. The leading study on the impact of nurses’ strikes in the US concludes mortality increases by 19% on days when the nurses are on strike. While we don’t know how many people die in Irish hospitals on an average day, we do know that in Ireland in total, an average of 85 die each day. It’s a matter of opinion how many of the 85 die in hospitals, in my opinion, it’s the majority, even the elderly and those murdered (like the unfortunate in Darndale this morning). So, if 50 people die in hospital on an average day, that will increase to 60 when the nurses are on strike.

    However. all of that is to ignore the obvious. The nurses are on strike today to improve conditions for the entire future, improved conditions that will save lives. So, this short term pain is worth it for the long term gain of the betterment of our health system.


    1. Cian

      Everyone dies. All that the nurses (and everyone else in the health services) do is postpone the inevitable.

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