Prendergast “Horrified” At Blood Board Appointments

Labour MEP for Munster, and former nurse and midwife, Phil Prendergast, today called on Minister for Health James Reilly to immediately release the criteria by which people were appointed to the blood board. She also requested an urgent meeting with the Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore regarding the apparent divvying up of appointments to the blood board between Fine Gael and Labour.

Labour MEP for Munster, and former nurse and midwife, Phil Prendergast, today called on Minister for Health James Reilly to immediately release the criteria by which people were appointed to the blood board. She also requested an urgent meeting with the Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore regarding the apparent divvying up of appointments to the blood board between Fine Gael and Labour.

Speaking on this issue today, Ms. Prendergast said “It would appear once again that Minister for Health James Reilly, in cahoots with Labour leadership, or at least with their acquiescence, is attaching a greater weight to party affiliation and loyalty than qualifications for the job at hand.

“As a former nurse and healthcare professional, I am absolutely horrified at this latest scandal. Trust in the blood board and its professionalism is directly linked to trust in the blood donation system, something which is only now starting to regain public trust after the scandals of the 1990’s. I would fear that something like this could impact on the level of donations, which we heard in recent days is at a critical level.

“I am calling on Minister Reilly to immediately release the criteria by which people were appointed to the board. I will also be seeking a meeting with my own party Leader Eamon Gilmore, to find out what knowledge his office had of the “6FG” and “3Lab” procedure for appointing people to boards, and whether this is something which is repeated with other appointments.”