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15 Aug 2022

Calls for medical cover on Tory Island after people removed to hospital

What if someone were to need stitches? What if someone had a heart attack?

Calls for medical cover on Tory Island after people removed to hospital

Tory Island

There is mounting concern that there is no nurse on Tory island after a number of people had to be taken to Letterkenny University Hospital, yesterday morning. 

It is understood the nurse for the island is on annual leave and islanders are concerned that there is no cover in place. The manager of Comharchumann Thoraí Teo Marjorie Uí Chearbhaill said it is very concerning that islanders have been left in this situation. She said a similar situation arose two months ago and said while she appreciates there may be staffing difficulties on the mainland the issue for islanders leaves them in a more precarious position. 

“If someone gets sick or needs medical attention on the mainland they can be brought to Letterkenny University Hospital within an hour. We can’t do the same thing. It is extremely concerning,” she said. 

Sinn Féin Councillor John Shéamais Ó Fearraigh said that he and Deputy Pearse Doherty would be raising the issue with the HSE on Monday. 

“What if someone were to fall and need stitches? What if someone has a heart attack? The island is busy at the moment with tourists and people are home for summer. The population has increased so the chances of illness and accidents has also increased on the island. The issue needs to be addressed. The people of Tory cannot be left again without having medical care. It shouldn’t happen. Cover needs to be put in place?”

The work of the Tory coastguard has been commended by people on Tory today. Ms Cearbhaill also commended the services and pointed out that these people work in a voluntary capacity and are not medical personnel. 

“We were left without a nurse before and we don’t want it to happen again. The islanders must have the same medical cover as those who live on the mainland,” she said. 

A doctor visits the island twice a week. 

“Adequate cover is needed on the island. This is an issue that we cannot be complacent about,” she said. 

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