Saturday 24 March 2018

Fiach Kelly: Same old fiasco back to haunt beleaguered minister

OF all his controversies, it is the one that just will not go away for Dr James Reilly. On top of the health service needing a bailout, his personal finances and the handling of the Savita Halappanavar tragedy, the primary care fiasco haunts him.

From bumping Balbriggan and Swords in his Dublin North constituency up a priority list, to his junior minister Roisin Shortall resigning over the affair, to one of his supporters owning the site on which a health centre will be built – just when Dr Reilly thinks he's away from the affair, it pulls him back in.

This time it's the disclosure that Ambrose McLoughlin, the head civil servant in the Department of Health, ordered an audit to "ascertain" if there were any connections between his minister and the location of primary care centres.

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