My experience over the last 8 years:
• In the Dail:
As spokesperson for Health and Children in the Dail, I put together a health policy that included a medical card for all children under 5, free medical insurance for all children under 16 and established a Patient Safety Authority to protect everyone in the health service. This plan has been further developed by the current Fine Gael Faircare policy.
I also was responsible for health legislation which included training standards for doctors, giving additional responsibility to nurses and I tried to ensure that nursing home legislation was as fair as possible.
• In Seanad Eireann:
I was appointed Deputy Leader in the Seanad by party leader Enda Kenny.
I am also Fine Gael’s Finance Spokesperson in the Seanad and sat on Fine Gael’s Finance team with Michael Noonan, where we met the Department of Finance and spoke at length with EU Commissioner Olli Rehn on his visit to Ireland.
I have also worked with Richard Bruton who is an outstanding representative.
• As a GP:
I have made innovative changes to my practice to benefit my patients, including completely computerising our filing system, having blood results delivered on line and employing a practice nurse.
I was instrumental in setting up Caredoc – an out of hours GP service - for County Wexford. Caredoc is also completely computerised allowing us to email information concerning patients to their own GP, while we are out on a call.
I have held public meetings on health issues and I would bring this same innovation, drive and passion for change that I have brought to my role as a doctor to any role I would have in the next government.
• As Chairman of Wexford Clinical Society:
I have a role in the continuous education of all doctors in County Wexford. My role involves attaining medical speakers who are leaders in their field to pass on their expertise and knowledge to doctors in County Wexford.
• As your local representative:
At my political office, I help represent my constituents with issues of: housing, pensions, roads, education, social welfare applications, and a range of other concerns.
The retention of services at Wexford General Hospital was one of the reasons why I entered politics and it continues to be at the forefront of my priorities. I will continue to work for the people of County Wexford to maintain services at our hospital.
I believe that by working hard together we can do it and improve the prospects for our county and our country.