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Doctors' organisation says politics getting in way of patient treatment

IMO President Dr Matthew Sadlier was also critical of the free GP care plan and Universal Health Insurance proposals.

THE PRESIDENT OF the Irish Medical Organisation (IMO) has said that political interference in the health services was limiting the potential of doctors to treat patients properly.

Dr Matthew Sadlier was critical of the government’s plan to provide free GP care for all children under six. At the organisation’s AGM in Kildare this morning, he slated the proposals from the government to introduce a new contract with GPs to put this plan in place.

The IMO has been rowing with the government over the plans, accusing the Minister James Reilly and his junior minister Alex White of refusing to negotiate with them on fees for GP care.

Sadlier also highlighted the fact that members undertook industrial action in recent months to force the government to ensure junior doctors, or Non Consultant Hospital Doctors, would not have to work “dangerously long working hours”.

There were questions raised about Reilly’s now famous Universal Health Insurance system and Sadlier criticised the government for not allowing broader debate about competing finance models for services.

At the time the white paper on UHI was published, Reilly dismissed claims that it could cost families a significant amount. However he said he could not predict now what it actually will cost when it is implemented.

Read: How much will Universal Health Insurance cost you?>

White: I invited the IMO to talk about GP concerns – that hasn’t happened>

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