Medical Council/HSE make stupid pretentious decisions with drastic consequences for patient services in hospitals

Madam, – Regarding the chaos that is the manpower situation in Our Lady’s Hospital, Drogheda (“Junior doctor ‘unable to work on call due to poor English’,” October 5th), I think it is useful to catalogue the mistakes that brought it about.

First mistake: the Medical Council appointed the HSE to regulate medical education and training. Second mistake: the HSE formed a subgroup (METR) for this role, which decided that a non-consultant post would not be recognised for training unless it was part of a rotational scheme. Thus posts previously recognised as suitable for training by the various postgraduate training bodies, but not in rotational schemes, no longer have a training status. We now have a situation where, in any one department with the same clinical and educational opportunities, some non-consultant doctors are deemed to be training while others are not.

These posts are now unattractive and unfillable except by EU graduates, some of whom have dubious clinical knowledge and rudimentary English. The recruitment difficulties now experienced by smaller hospitals will affect the larger city hospitals in the New Year.

Irish medical graduates are recognised as among the best internationally. If this new role of the HSE is anything like its attempt to run a health service the future is bleak for Irish medical training and Irish patients. – Yours, etc,



Eastern Regional Anaesthetic

Training Scheme,

Consultant Anaesthetist,

Coombe Women and Infants

University Hospital/St James’s

Hospital, Dublin 8.