Normal service must begin to resume in some private hospitals as soon as possible, according to independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice.

For the past few weeks, private hospitals have been taken over to aid in the fight against Covid-19.

With the number of people with Covid-19 in hospitals dropping below 300 this week, the Roscommon-Galway representative believes the Minister for Health, Simon Harris, needs to make changes to the arrangement – which is being discussed by Cabinet today.

Speaking on the matter, Fitzmaurice said: “While it was necessary for private hospitals to be called upon in order to combat Covid-19, it is now time for normal service to resume in at least some of these private hospitals.

“There are countless people across the country which depend on private hospitals for a variety of procedures.

“My office has been contacted by various people who requirement operations, such as a hip replacement for example, but whose appointments have been postponed. Some of these people are in constant pain and require the operation as a matter of urgency.

“With the number of people with Covid-19 now in hospital dropping below 300, it’s time to begin easing the hold over private hospitals.

“While it is important to consider the possible implications of a second wave, people cannot be left to suffer any longer.

“It would also reduce the €115 million a bill that is being racked up as a result of the decision to use private hospitals during the pandemic,” Fitzmaurice concluded.

Michael Fitzmaurice TD 086-1914565

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