Back to the Future day

14-09-23 John Screen Grab

I bring to the attention of Members that yesterday was Back to the Future day. It was the day depicted in the famous 1985 movie starring Michael J. Fox, following the intervention of Christopher Lloyd and a DeLorean encapsulated time machine. If Marty McFly had been Dr. Marty McFly and had been transported from the … Continue reading

Overcrowding of Hospital Beds is a Symptom of bigger problem

[Speaking in the Seanad during Order of Business] I have noticed substantial speculation in recent days which is a result of the welcome attention that has been placed on a very unwelcome problem, namely, the question of overcrowding in emergency rooms and the ultimate cause of the bottlenecks that prevent people in need transitioning through … Continue reading

Health Reform

[Speaking in the Seanad during a Fianna Fail Private Members Motion on Health Services] Again, I welcome the Minister. He is a young man and is about the same age as I was when I first became a consultant oncologist in Ireland’s medical service. I was full of enthusiasm and optimism and thought a problem … Continue reading

Inhumane Waiting Lists and Cancer Care Levels

[Speaking in the Seanad during Order of Business] I ask the Leader to bring to the attention of the Minister for Health, and to consider having a debate on, the promised reform of our health system. It was one of the key planks of Fine Gael and the Labour Party before the last general election … Continue reading

Longer waiting lists due to health system failure

[Speaking in the Seanad during Order of Business] The longer one is in a place such as this, the more grounds one has for cynicism and despondency. As somebody who has consistently for 20 years espoused fundamental reform of our health system, who is prepared to blame successive health Ministers from the Labour Party, Fianna … Continue reading

National Programme for Eye Care and the National Vision Coalition

[Speaking in the Seanad during Fine Gael’s Private Members’ Time Motion on eye-care/blindness] Link to full text of this Fine Gael Motion: http://www.oireachtas.ie/viewdoc.asp?DocID=26669&&CatID=63 I warmly welcome the Minister [new Health Minister, Varadkar] to the House. He has been one of the stand-out performers of the current Government. His intervention in an unrelated issue, with respect … Continue reading

Varadkar must harness his aloofness, arrogance and self-regard to succeed

14-05 John speaking 3

[As published in the Sunday Independent on Sunday July 13, 2014] ‘Varadkar is sufficiently unmindful of his master’s bidding to ignore attempts to transform the department into an office of the Campaign to Re-Elect the Taoiseach’ Former transport minister has been the stand-out performer in Government so far. TWO apparently unrelated events this week might … Continue reading