Bradshaw concerned by Health Minister not talking about substantial reform

Alliance MLA Paula Bradshaw has said she is concerned to hear talk from the Health Minister of investment for the health service instead of substantial reform.

Party Health spokesperson Ms Bradshaw was speaking after Health Minister Michelle O’Neill addressed the Assembly on waiting times, saying her Department will be bidding for additional resources in this month’s monitoring round in order to tackle excessive waiting times.

“It is concerning to hear more talk from Sinn Fein of the need for more funding and investment instead of anything substantial around reform of the health and care sector,” said the South Belfast MLA.

“The Health Minister prefaced today’s commitment to dealing with waiting lists in the short-term ‘if’ she managed to secure additional resources in the forthcoming monitoring round. What will she do if this funding is not forthcoming?

“There was also talk about the need for more people to be treated in the community. However, when I pushed the Minister for details of financial resources she will be allocating within this financial year to increase the capacity in infrastructure and human resources, she was unable to provide any details. I fear today’s statement was about creating headlines, not delivering solutions to the critical situation.”

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