LAST weekend Labour leader Brendan Howlin suggested water charge refunds be deferred so the money might be used to get the, as is usual, over-budget HSE through the winter.
Helpful though Mr Howlin’s intervention may be it would be far more inspiring if he, or any politician, could suggest how the gross ineptitude that characterises the administration of the HSE might be tackled. If that institutionalised dysfunction was resolved maybe the HSE might not need an annual bail out. Maybe more money could be spent on patients rather than on consultants.
Today we report again on a €35m IT system that was supposed to reduce paperwork in hospitals. Leaving aside the obvious question about why this is still a work in progress in late 2017, it is beyond comprehension that this system cannot be activated and actually creates work because it is not linked to the system private-practice doctors who look after pregnant women use. Duplication is required and the possibility of error increased in an over-stretched environment.
In recent days two senior public servants retired and though neither could describe their achievements as exemplary both will enjoy golden handshakes and pensions beyond the wildest dreams of 95% of the population.
Until a link is established between reward, especially rewards in retirement, and performance then we can expect fiascos like the HSE maternity IT system to continue. More fool us.
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