The series kicked off earlier this year in Trinity College Dublin, with subsequent debates held in University College Cork, Limerick Institute of Technology and Dundalk Institute of Technology. All of the debates have been both lively and interesting. Chair for the debate series is Assistant Editor of The Irish Times, Fintan O’Toole. The motion for the Galway debate in NUIG will be, “This house believes that Ireland has insufficient bed capacity to meet our healthcare needs."
Debating for the motion at the Galway debate will be a representative from the Irish Nurses Organisation, alongside a representative from the Irish Hospital Consultants Association. Opposing the motion will be a representative from the Health Service Executive, alongside a representative from PA Consulting Group. The Galway debate is expected to provide an opportunity for engagement and open discussion with leading commentators participating in the debate and a forum for those attending to articulate perspectives and concerns around the issue of hospital bed capacity. With over 100 people attending the previous debates, the event is also expected to attract large numbers.
Commenting on the debate series Ms. Tara Delaney, Director of External Affairs, Pfizer Healthcare Ireland said; “Pfizer is committed to working with stakeholders and partners such as The Irish Times to provide health information and education to the public in an effort to improve the country’s health. This debate series offers an opportunity for people across the country to engage and discuss topical health issues with key opinion leaders in the healthcare field and hear open and frank debate on relevant health issues in Ireland. The last four debates have been very lively, with interesting perspectives articulated on both sides of the argument, and informed commentary from guests in the audience. We hope the debate series continues to generate conversation around topical issues, giving us all an opportunity to reflect on and contribute to the policy concerns and controversies that are shaping the Irish health landscape".
Also commenting on the debates, Barry O’Keeffe, Editor of The Irish Times’ HealthPlus supplement said; “The appetite for health-related issues among the public has increased significantly over recent years, and people are becoming more and more vocal about their thoughts and concerns on Ireland’s health system; we hope to harness this interest in a practical way by providing a forum for people, not only to listen to key issues being debated, but also to have the opportunity to air their views. The Irish Times is pleased to partner with Pfizer on this series of debates in 2009, and we urge members of the public to come along, attend the debates and make their voices heard.”
*Members of the public are asked to register their attendance in advance by calling Orla Dormer on (01) 669 0030 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Published: 19th November 2009.