Monday 18 February 2019

Letters to the Editor: 'My answer to the NCH fiasco comes for cut-price fee of €15'

Health Minister Simon Harris. Photo: Arthur Carron
Health Minister Simon Harris. Photo: Arthur Carron
Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

Having heard PwC is to receive a world-class fee of €450,000 to tell us why the cost of the world-class National Children’s Hospital went from €650,000,000 to over €1,730,000,000, I decided to get out my trusty old slide rule and submit a cost-effective alternative report to the Government.

Firstly, a simple projection of current timing and cost increases will bring the final figure to around €5,650,000,000 by the time it opens in 2035, still good value for a world-class hospital, our world-class Government would say.

Secondly, the genesis for this world-class fiasco was based on our national inferiority complex which drove our politicians and medics to create a futuristic world-class vanity project, second to none on a global scale, irrespective of the cost to the taxpayer.

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Though jammed into the most unsuitable and inaccessible site in the country, this monstrosity would massage the egos of all those involved, leaving the sick children and their long suffering parents waiting indefinitely.

Thirdly, it is self-evident that all parents and their sick children ever wished for was a functional and efficient hospital, easily accessible in times of emergency.

Finally, nobody will be held accountable as this world-class cock-up was due to a systems failure. However, if those crazy Brexiteers would move over, then there might eventually be a special place in hell for all those world-class fools who got us into this embarrassing and costly mess.

My fee for this in-depth and concise report is €15.

John Leahy,

Wilton Road, Co Cork

Knotty problem lies at heart of distress over lingerie ad

I presume Lorraine Courtney was being facetious in her article about an in-your-face racy undergarment advertisement in a Dublin shopping mall: Ms Courtney asks “why are people getting their knickers in a twist” about it (Irish Independent, ‘The Week’, February 9)?

On close-up scrutiny of the advertisement it is obvious why, from the model’s grimace; the said undergarment is clearly causing the poor model deep physical distress which I suspect is due to the lady’s breathing being much restricted by the knottiness of the said undergarment.

Micheál O’Cathail

Dún Laoghaire, Dublin

Harris’s ‘fantastic’ hospital? Only in Coveney’s dreams

On ‘RTÉ’s News’ last week, Simon Coveney defended Health Minister Simon Harris and his “fantastic children’s hospital”.

My Oxford English Dictionary defines the adjective fantastic as “existing only in the imagination, unreal”, “perversely or irrationally imagined”, “of the nature of a phantasm” and so on.

Need more be said?

Cal Hyland

Rosscarbery, Co Cork

Ancient proverb punctuates UK prime minister’s woes

The Chinese might be forgiven for saying:  “May, you live in interesting times!”

Bríd Fitzpatrick

Terenure, Dublin

If we want better nursing, it’s time to match pay elsewhere

Comparing the starting salaries of Irish nurses to their counterparts in other parts of the world (Irish Independent, February 8) one would have to wonder how we hold on

to so many in our own country.

The salary offered in this country to our young nurse graduates is €29,056 on a 39-hour week. In other parts of the world they get paid a much better starting salary.

In parts of Australia the starting salary is equal to €39,295, in Canada it is €43,012, in London they get paid €29,828 and in California they can earn €55,000.

The working week can vary in some places from 36 to 38 hours. In all cases, Ireland is bottom of the pile.

It seems a shame that after paying to educate our nurses to a very high standard, which is highly valued right across the world, that we don’t value them to the same extent at home.

Those who choose to stay and work at home are run off their feet in a creaking-at-the-seams and chaotic health service.

We have failed to entice emigrant nurses home in recent years in anything like sufficient numbers to make up the shortfall. Such a move would ensure a much better service to the unfortunate patients in our overcrowded hospitals across the land.

Perhaps the time has come to consider giving pay parity on nurses’ salaries with other countries in the more developed parts of the world.

Tom Towey

Cloonacool, Co Sligo

Irish Independent

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