A South Kildare TD is criticising the Government over current outpatient eye care waiting lists. The list currently stands at 41,600 and are continuing to rise.
Deputy Fiona O’Loughlin said: "There are currently 41,600 and more than 16,000 of these are waiting more than a year. Ireland’s eye care service must be reformed in order to have a service that functions."
She said:“These figures are very disappointing- The service needs to change if we are going to reduce the amount of people on outpatient waiting lists. In some parts of the country, there are waiting times of up to five years for cataract surgery, which is just disgraceful."
Deputy O'Loughlin said:“I hosted a public meeting in Kildare recently on the Cross Border Directive and the majority of people looking for information were waiting for cataract surgery and wanted to look at going abroad for the service. It is unacceptable that a person can receive treatment within six weeks in Belfast yet, could be waiting two years in the Republic of Ireland for the same treatment”.
Earlier this week the Association of Optometrists called for more routine eye care to be managed in the community and that will free up time for more specialised care to be managed in the hospitals which must not be overlooked.
She said:"The Minister must take action now and not in a few years."
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