Susan O’Keeffe: If we want health service reform, we must listen to frontline workers

The Covid-19 crisis has laid bare the many shortcomings in our health service, but it’s those at the coalface who understand best what is needed to fix it

Healthcare workers here are not routinely tested for the virus, whereas in the UK, for example, they are tested twice a week

When the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) appeared before the Joint Oireachtas Health Committee earlier this week, the headlines surprised no one. They centred on the exhaustion of frontline health workers and the chaos of the early months of the pandemic. Not surprisingly, they also included details of the haphazard distribution of vaccines when they first arrived here just after Christmas.

No system is ever perfect, especially one under strain. Problems and obstacles are ...