independent

Tuesday 23 September 2014

'We didn't fight for ambulances'

Mary Murphy

Published 23/04/2014 | 05:36

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THE people of Killarney only have themselves to blame for the town's depleted ambulance service, which has been the focus of growing controversy.

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In recent months concerns have been raised repeatedly about the availability of ambulances in the Killarney area and the amount of time it has taken for ambulances to reach patients.

However, South Kerry senator Mark Daly, pictured right, and a HSE paramedic are now laying the blame squarely on the people of Killarney for allowing the HSE to cut back the town's ambulance service while other towns saved theirs.

A public meeting held last September in Killarney to support the town's ambulance service was attended by just seven people, which may have been a significant factor in the HSE decision.

'The people of Killarney let themselves down. Over 300 people turned up at a similar meeting in Kenmare. There were big meetings in Skibbereen. And it's no coincidence that both kept their ambulance,' the HSE paramedic said.

'If people don't fight for their services the HSE will have no problem taking them away, but there is always a chance that they will give them back if you do stand up and fight for them now,' Senator Daly said.

A HSE service review meeting on the south Kerry ambulance service is to be held in Killarney on Wednesday, April 30. Senator Daly, of Fianna Fáil, wants families and patients affected by the ambulance cuts to be allowed attend that meeting to air their views.

Kerryman

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