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Ambulance reform must be swifter

IT did not need a TV expose to highlight the deficiencies of the country's ambulance service. However, Prime Time did bring the stark reality of what some grieving families have experienced to the attention of all, and that can only be a good thing.

The HSE has responded by saying reform is under way, but it is not happening quickly enough.

During any tough times, as experienced by this country over recent years, public services feel the brunt as finances are slashed and expenditure tightened. But what has happened with our ambulance service has been too much to bear.

HIQA is to conduct a review of what has gone on, and overseas experts will be consulted.

Figures speak for themselves. In 2008 there was a fleet of 320 ambulances. That dropped to 265 last year. A depletion in any service was bound to have repercussions.

Enough is enough. People who dial 999 deserve better.


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