Saturday 24 March 2018

Defence Forces called in to help get HSE staff to work

The Defence Forces across the North East played a vital role in ensuring vital health care was continued for many essential patients during Storm Emma.

Army personnel across the region also assisted in getting hospital and medical staff when the severe weather made travel too difficult.

A spokesman for the 27th Battalion explained that the personnel are on standby for any requests.

'Our drivers have been deployed to transport essential nursing and hospital staff to their place of work.'

He added 'We also had a number of drivers and vehicles transporting patients for medical appointments in the Leinster area.'

The spokesman said that on Friday, troops from Dundalk were tasked to transport bottled water to Drogheda.

In a statement, a HSE spokesperson said: ''Thank you to our Defence Forces for picking up our dedicated staff from Drogheda, Lusk and Donabate this morning and getting them to work safely to care for patients and service users in North Dublin Mental Health Services.'

Over 120 Defence Forces personnel and 60 4x4 vehicles have been deployed in support to @HSELive and local authorities in one 24 hour period alone.

'Teams were out all night ensuring medical staff could get to work and patients could get the treatments they need around the country.'

Health Minister Simon Harris paid tribute to the support provided by the army during the snows, tweeting 'Just to give insight into excellent work between HSELive and our Defence Forces. So far more than 40+ cases where Defence Forces have assisted including, transfer of thirty dialysis patients - movement of critical staff to hospitals and hospices.'

The Argus