‘To see the sneering, smirking attitude of An Taoiseach Micheál Martin, the leader of our country, belittle the suffering of people in need of these procedures’ – Úna Doogue (Aontú Party in Laois).
By Joe Barrett
PEOPLE in Laois waiting on cataract and hip replacement procedures can now be assisted to get their procedures carried out in Northern Ireland.
The Aontú Party in Laois is offering support to anyone in the county who feels they need to avail of the Cross Border Directive services for cataract and hip surgery procedures.
Una Doogue from the Laois branch of Aontú said she received up to date cataract and hip procedure figures which were released following a Parliamentary Question by the party leader Peadar Tóibín.
Ms Doogue said: “I was interested to get up to date figures for Laois as a result of the recent theatrics in the Dáil during the exchange between An Taoiseach Micheál Martin and Michael Healy-Rae regarding the Cross Border Directive for people needing to avail of the service with cataract and hip surgery procedures being the most common under this directive.
“In my work as Parliamentary Assistant to Peadar Tóibín both myself and our Aontú Mayo representative Paul Lawless have been assisting people from around the country who are on waiting lists for these procedures most commonly elderly people.
“For people in need of cataract procedures, it can have an impact on their ability to drive causing a public road safety issue. For those who can no longer drive due to needing a cataract procedure, it has a direct effect on their ability to maintain their independence which can lead to social isolation among the elderly.”
She said: “With regards to people in need of hip surgery, I have personally dealt with a case where the person was in such excruciating pain their life became so intolerable they had to be referred to Pieta House for support while waiting for their surgery. “Both myself and Deputy Peadar Tóibín were instrumental in helping to get a local hospital helpline set up for these cases so they could be updated with their appointments during COVID and be able to access pain management through the hospital.”
Ms Doogue said: “To see the sneering, smirking attitude of An Taoiseach Micheál Martin, the leader of our country, belittle the suffering of people in need of these procedures demonstrated his deep disconnect from the reality of people’s lives from within the cosseted walls of Leinster House.”
“For anybody from Laois in need of information and assistance about the Cross Border Directive they can contact me through Peadar Tóibín’s office at 046 9023472 or 085 784 0960,” said Ms Doogue.