Department of Health keeping 'tight reins' on spending - Reilly

Wednesday 03 April 2013 22.26
James Reilly said the department is operating a much better financial system than it was in April 2012
James Reilly said the department is operating a much better financial system than it was in April 2012

Minister for Health James Reilly has said that he has no problem providing monthly reports to the Troika on the Department of Health's efforts to rein in spending.

"The more input we have, the more help we have, the better as far as I'm concerned," Mr Reilly told journalists at an Irish Society for Autism conference in Dublin this morning.

The minister was responding to a report on the matter in The Irish Times.

Mr Reilly said he believes the department is operating a much better financial system now than it was this time last year and it is keeping "very tight reins" on spending.

The minister said that he believes the Governance Bill, which is currently going through the Oireachtas, will be passed by the end of the month.

He said this will allow the appointment of the new HSE Chief Financial Officer, which "would bolster" financial controls.

Sinn Féin Health Spokesperson Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin said the report shows that patients in the public health system are "at the mercy of the Troika, incompetent Health Minister James Reilly and the broken promises on healthcare from the Fine Gael/Labour Coalition".

Fianna Fáil Health Spokesperson Billy Kelleher also criticised the minister over the newspaper reports.

Mr Kelleher said: "This is a damning verdict of Minister Reilly and adds more weight to calls for him to be removed before any more damage is done to the health sector."