Laois native and senior HSE manager praises Covid-19 frontline but warns of 'exceptionally challenging' weeks to come

Staff deserve 'immense gratitude'

Conor Ganly

Reporter:

Conor Ganly

coronavirus covid-19

Pat Bennett, Chief Officer, HSE Midlands, Louth and Meath

A senior HSE community health service manager and Portlaoise native has praised health staff on the Covid-19 frontline but also warned that the virus will continue to present exceptional challenges.

Pat Bennett, Chief Officer, HSE Midlands, Louth and Meath. Mr Bennett is responsible for overseeing community healthcare in Laois and other midlands counties.

"The scale of the challenge that we are facing at the moment has continued to reveal itself," he said in a statement.

"The announcement by An Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, that the current lockdown will continue at least until 5th May, after the Bank Holiday Weekend, confirmed just how acute the current crisis is.

"All of this underlines once again the importance of the role our frontline workers are fulfilling on behalf of the people of the Midlands Louth Meath. Without these efforts, the situation would be infinitely more challenging.

"It has been dispiriting for all of us to see the number of people who have lost their lives over the past weeks. We offer our sincere sympathies to the loved ones of those who have died. We will continue to fight to save as many lives as possible," he said.

Mr Bennett warned that the virus will continue to present problems.

"The coming weeks will continue to be exceptionally challenging. To suggest otherwise would be to ignore the realities of what is happening around the world, in our country, and in our own area.

"The courage and commitment of healthcare workers on the frontline of this crisis all across the Midlands Louth Meath is something that is truly inspirational. You are part of this frontline and it is something that you can be so proud of.

"I want to again thank our frontline workers for everything they are doing across all our services in the Midlands Louth Meath. In whatever role you are working in across our organisation, what you are doing is essential to our collective efforts. This is deserving of immense gratitude,” he said.

For further information on Covid 19, testing, cocooning and minding your mental health during Covid 19 please visit: www.hse.ie.