DENTAL clinic services under the auspices of the Health Service Executive, which were significantly reduced since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, have re-opened and all re-deployed staff have returned to their substantive posts, a Killarney councillors has been assured.
Cllr Michael Gleeson has raised the matter at an online meeting of the HSE Forum South and he asked if a full service is again being provided to schools and to entitled members of the public.
The HSE said services had been scaled back as additional health and safety and infection controls measures were required to safely manage staff and patients during the pandemic but they have resumed since October.
Key performance indicators suggest that the service is currently operating at 50 per cent of normal levels.
There is no waiting list for emergency care as patients are seen on the day or early the following morning if contact is made late in the day.
The school screening service for pupils of sixth and second classe sis expected to run 12 months behind target due to clinics being suspended from mid-March to June because of lockdown restrictions implemented.
The inhalation service at University Hospital Kerry is providing a regular service with 15 children on the waiting list while there are currently 126 children on the list for general anaesthetic extractions in the hospital. The waiting period for some children is 18 to 24 months and prioritisation criteria are in place.
The HSE told Cllr Gleeson that there are currently 41 children or young adults with special needs on the wait list. They clients need to be treated in a hospital setting but this was delayed in 2020 due to a lack of access to the hospital theatre.
Services resumed in September 2020 with access to theatre in Mallow General Hospital.
Cllr Gleeson welcomed that the services have all re-opened and he asked that the HSE would endeavour to recruit additional staff to help eliminate delays with some services, particularly for patients with special needs.
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