Cross border directive for patients needs additional resources
FIANNA Fáil TD Eamon Scanlon has called on the government to increase staff numbers in the Cross Border Directive Office. He raised the issue with the Taoiseach in the Dáil yesterday.
Deputy Scanlon explained, “The Cross Border Directive is an extremely popular scheme which provides patients who are on a public waiting list for a procedure with the option of having their surgery in a hospital in the North or abroad, once it is not more expensive that the same treatment here.
“Waiting lists for outpatient procedures for Sligo University Hospital are at record levels, with 2,145 people waiting more than 12 months for an outpatient appointment. The Cross Border Directive gives these patients the option of heading North or abroad to have their procedure carried out much sooner.
“Many people who contact my office about this scheme end up taking a place on it – in fact the workload volume has increased by 1200% in the last two years. However, staff levels have remained the same, with only 11 people processing applications for the whole country.”