'This isn't new!': Shelagh Fogarty criticises Health Sec for comments on NHS waiting times

7 December 2022, 20:13 | Updated: 7 December 2022, 20:16

Shelagh Fogarty criticises the health secretary over waiting times.

Melissa Fleur Afshar

By Melissa Fleur Afshar

Shelagh Fogarty is outraged at the Health Secretary's comments on the current state of the NHS.

"This isn't new!" began Shelagh Fogarty.

Her outrage came after the Health Secretary, Steve Barclay, had stated in a series of media appearances that due to the upcoming strikes ambulances may not attend all emergency calls.

Elderly people falling and needing emergency care was cited as an example by the Secretary of State for Health.

"The statement was horrible on all kinds of fronts because this just isn't new," said Shelagh.

"Old people, young people, disabled people, people with suspected heart attacks and strokes have been waiting for years now. They've not just been waiting for a few months since this latest crisis has become worse, but for years."

Shelagh then opened up about a time in 2018, when he mother fell down a flight of stairs and needed emergency care but had to wait for hours until a paramedic arrived.

READ MORE: NHS set to descend into chaos as nurses announce two days of walkouts in December

Moving back to the present day, Shelagh said:

"The flow, the system in the hospitals and outside in social care are at breaking point. The suggestion from Steve Barclay that today is the day that he decides to pipe up about ambulances and the flow of patients and that today is the day that he decides to talk about old people lying helpless on carpets if they are lucky to be on carpets and not outside in the cold."

Shelagh expressed that she felt Steve Barclay's comments were insulting and dismissive of the pressure the NHS has faced over the past few years.

"This isn't new, people waiting isn't new," Shelagh repeated.

Steve Barclay's comments come as the nation prepares for thousands of NHS ambulance workers and nurses to strike in December.