Edenderry ambulance base impasse

THERE continues to be no moves on the impasse over permanent accommodation for Edenderry Ambulance service, despite a special Dail debate on the ongoing issue.

THERE continues to be no moves on the impasse over permanent accommodation for Edenderry Ambulance service, despite a special Dail debate on the ongoing issue.

A permanent ambulance bay is being sought for the Edenderry based service, which is currently working out of accommodation in what was the Matron’s living quarters in Ofalia house consisting of 1 room, a storage unit and one toilet to be used by male and female ambulance staff.

In a bid to get answers, Fianna Fail TD, Barry Cowen questioned Minister of State for Primary Care Róisín Shorthall, TD on the matter. However, the local deputy was not happy with the Minister’s failure to provide answers on the matter.

Deputy Cowen said, “The temporary accommodation for the ambulance services in Edenderry is totally unacceptable and simply does not meet the standards required. It is crucial that permanent facilities are found immediately.

According to the Laois/Offaly Deputy, while these delays continue, lives were being put at risk. “The Minister for Health, the HSE and the County Council have continued to pass the buck on who is responsible for this mess. It’s time for Minister James Reilly and his Junior Minister Roísín Shortall to take proper action to find a full time facility for Edenderry Ambulance. This can be done by either extending the area within Ofalia House for the ambulance service or leasing a suitable vacant unit around Edenderry town.

“Minister Shorthall’s answers to my questions in the Dáil were totally inadequate. She said that the National Ambulance Service (NAS) are engaging with the local authority in an effort to resolve the issue. I informed the Minister that this has already happened, and this avenue has been completely exhausted. It’s time for the Government to take an interest in this, in the interests of public safety in this region.”