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25/09/2021

Fears for ambulance services in Athy

Athy

Fears are growing for the impact on Athy if the ambulance emergency services are moved from Carlow to Kilkenny.

Cllr Thomas Redmond is concerned that the move will affect the Athy and south Kildare region in the next week.

Redmond claims that he has been told by a whistleblower that Carlow Ambulance station is to close due to the condition of the workplace.

“This will mean the Carlow ambulance crews will be moved to Kilkenny and there are real fears from those staff in Athy now about difficulties in maintaining a safe presence for all,” he said

“In Athy we know of stories of ambulances breaking down and worse.

“I have asked health spokesperson Louise Reilly to immediately question the minister on the continued downgrading of emergency services that happens to Athy and surrounding counties.

“An Athy ambulance was made drive to Waterford in the last week because there were no ambulances in the South East. I worry if my child or family needed these services would they be there.”

In response the HSE said that the National Ambulance Service has confirmed that following an internal health and safety audit, an issue was identified in relation to the shower and changing facilities used by staff at Carlow ambulance station. “Works are planned to take place in order to rectify the issue concerned and this is being treated as a priority by the NAS. Discussions are underway with staff with a view to addressing how services to the Carlow area can best be provided while the planned works are underway and patient safety will of course be a priority in these discussions. Service provision will not be compromised as a result of this issue,” it stated.

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