Laois Sinn Féin TD Brian Stanley is calling for increased resources for the Ambulance Services in Laois. He was reacting to the disclosure that Laois only has four ambulances stationed in the County.
Deputy Stanley said, “In reply to my Dáil Questions, the Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD, confirmed to me this week that Laois only has four ambulances in comparison to Offaly which has nine and Kildare which has 10 ambulances stationed in the County. There is also a Rapid Response Vehicle and an Intermediate Care Vehicle stationed in Tullamore.
“In addition Offaly and Kildare each have three ambulance stations across the county while all four Laois ambulances are based in Portlaoise. This information comes on the back of a separate reply that I received in May which outlined that some patients in the county had to wait over two hours for an ambulance to reach them.
“While the average waiting time has shown a slight improvement from 22 minutes to 21 minutes, it is totally unacceptable that anyone would have to wait over two hours for an ambulance.
“The importance of the ‘Golden Hour’ has been emphasised many times by health professionals and we must have an ambulance service capable of getting patients to Emergency Departments within that first hour.
“We need good ambulance cover in the County to deal with serious accidents or people becoming critical ill, in particular in the more remote areas of the County. With a high proportion of patients from Laois being sent directly or transferred to Tullamore or Dublin Hospitals, it is essential that the number of ambulances is increased.”
Clearly Laois is less well served by the ambulance services, added Deputy Stanley, and I am calling on Minister Harris to urgently review this under resourced service in Laois and to provide additional ambulances which are badly required.”