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Regulation not Prohibition

The interminable debate over proposals to criminalise purchasers of sex took another turn this week with the publication of the report by the Oireachtas Committee on Justice, Defence and Equality. Predictably it recommends the so-called “Swedish model” but it also includes draconian proposals to treat visitors to prostitution websites as sex offenders and ban the [...]

A casualty in the War on Reilly

Content gone from the Irish Times digital front page on Tuesday. The link is busted too. The not-quite-a-correction looks out of context without the original material. Sometimes a feeding frenzy leads to indigestion.

Irish delegation to Bahrain creates further complications

For the past few days (ending on Friday), an Irish delegation of doctors and politicians was in Bahrain to seek the freedom from detention of doctors imprisoned during the protest crackdown in that country. The link arose because the Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland has a long-standing partnership to train Bahraini doctors and some [...]

No to (Adult) Prostitution Ban

Recent months have seen the issue of prostitution come to prominence as the Presidential election approaches. A disturbing parallel with the Lisbon debate is evident in the near unanimity of the political and intellectual ‘Establishment’ for a blind support of traditional policy approaches. How can someone simultaneously claims the mantle of liberalism while also attempting [...]

The Powerpoint bandits

From RTE’s description of the X-ray crisis reforms at Tallaght Hospital – The main reforms will see the introduction of a board of management of ten and a review of the size and structure of the 22-member hospital board by consultants PricewaterhouseCoopers. The board of management will include external members ‘representing patient interests, business and [...]

Harney: Please stop identifying problems

In case you missed it, Peter O Rourke is a consultant in Letterkenny – yes we are supposed to hate them but hear this one out. Senior consultant surgeon Peter O’Rourke has revealed he and two colleagues were being paid to sit around doing nothing while operating theatres were lying empty at Letterkenny General Hospital, [...]

The summer that never came…

The chemist chop I went into to pick up a few things had a notice on the counter to say it wasn’t their fault, it was Mary Harney’s. They couldn’t fill HSE prescriptions and their best advice to patients was to contact Mary Harney – office address and phone numbers supplied – or their local [...]

Who, what and when? – Gov’t collapse

As Cian points out, the Government’s majority is potentially down to the vote of one TD after Sligo-North Leitrim TDs Eamon Scanlon and Jimmy Devins resigned the Fianna Fáil whip today. The Government now has 83 votes, including Jim McDaid but not today’s two. It consists of 72 Fianna Fáil TDs, 6 Greens, two former [...]

Leas Cross Report: Failure piled on Misery

It took some time to read and digest the full 300+ page Leas Cross investigation report. In the deluge of An Bord Snip coverage it made sense to leave a post until this morning. In the cold light of morning the report is worse than the initial impression my dulled senses took. There are a [...]

An Bord Snip: Dept of Health

Health, ah the Dept of Health. Not just the DHC but the HSE. And staff levels. Bertie and his failure to deal with it at inception means that the Bord Snip report goes to town on an already battered service. The Dept of Health is a policy body since the creation of the HSE and [...]

Full Leas Cross Report Newsdumped

The full Leas Cross Inquiry report is online since 4:00 as the whole of Ireland is obsessed with the Bord Snip report (see our posts here). The report is embedded below the fold. As I read I will add analysis and keep the post updated. Feel free to wade in in the comments.

Leas Cross Report to be Newsdumped Tomorrow

The Leas Cross situation was farce heaped upon horror as the initial report of Prof Des O Neill ran aground. First its publication was delayed becuase of ‘legal problems’ posed to the HSE by the narrow terms of reference. Harney refused to countenance a second inquiry before setting up a second inquiry. Let us recall [...]

Spinning Like a Top on Crumlin Cutbacks

From last night’s debate on a private members motion (FG) on Crumlin cutbacks. During the debate in the Dail, Ms Harney said: “I find it strange that when we ask hospitals to make efficiency savings, some hospitals decide that the most sensitive area is the area that should be cut first.” Those nasty hospitals….taking spin [...]

The industrial school scandal will run and run

Radio Ulster’s Sunday Sequence this morning had a superb roundup of the Ryan commission report and the fallout from it, with a comprehensive panel discussion (segment begins 33 minutes in).  The panel discussion made news with an apparent nod from the hierarchy that the 2002 indemnity deal will have to be reopened.  A nod that [...]

Are FG’s FairCare Proposals a Boon for Private Health Insurance?

After Fine Gael announced its recent FairCare proposals for health service reform I contacted ILR contributor Dr. Gerry Burke, consultant obstetrician & gynaecologist in Limerick’s Regional and Maternity Hospitals and a vociferous campaigner against co-location to see what he thought of the proposals. I first asked him if the proposals would help improve patient outcomes [...]

Food scare in the Green era

One potential area of interest in the handling of the pork scare is that it’s the first big food chain disruption with the Greens in government.  And in some ways, what we know about the problem should be a vindication of the “green” ethos, since as with BSE, the contamination comes from not agriculture in [...]

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