More than 100 jobs are to be cut at Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital in Crumlin as part of a drive to reduce costs, according to the trade union Impact.
“In a circular to all staff, the chief executive of the hospital, Lorcan Birthistle, indicated that the hospital will make ‘significant reductions in agency and temporary staff numbers’ in order to achieve savings,” Impact said.
The circular indicated that pay costs accounts for 70 per cent of the hospital’s expenditure, and that the hospital received €14 million below its projected expenditure for the current year from the Health Service Executive (HSE), it said.
The union added the staff cuts will affect most departments at the hospital.
Impact official Eamonn Donnelly said, “It is clear that the hospital is being penalised for providing services. In 2007, the hospital received €10 million less in funding from the HSE than it actually spent – money spent as a direct result of trying to meet the needs of children referred to the hospital.
“This year, the hospital has had to agree in advance that €7 million of savings will be achieved, despite their projected expenditure.”
“It is significant that these jobs are being done by temporary and agency staff. The restrictions on recruitment have led to an over-reliance on temporary and agency staff despite the increase in demand for services” he said.
The 28,000 Impact members in the HSE and HSE-funded organisations are refusing to cover posts left vacant by the HSE recruitment freeze. The freeze has so far left 2,700 vital jobs unfilled, the union said.