There are just four ambulances stationed in Laois and just one ambulance station according Sinn Féin TD Brian Stanley who has demanded that more emergency health services for the county.
The TD made the call for increased resources for the Ambulance Services in Laois getting information in Dáil reply from the Minister for Health, Simon Harris.
In a reply to questions put down by the Sinn Féin TD, Minister Harris, confirmed this week that Laois only has four ambulances in comparison to Offaly which has 9 and Kildare which has 10 ambulances. There is also a Rapid Response Vehicle and an Intermediate Care Vehicle stationed in Tullamore.
In addition, Offaly and Kildare each have three ambulance stations across the county while all four Laois ambulances are based in Portlaoise. The information comes on the back of a separate reply that Dep Stanley received in May which outlined that some patients in the county had to wait over two hours for an ambulance to reach them.
"While the average waiting time has shown a slight improvement from 22 minutes to 21 minutes, it is totally unacceptable that anyone would have to wait over 2 hours for an ambulance.
"The importance of the “Golden Hour” has been emphasised many times by health professionals and we must have an ambulance service capable of getting patients to Emergency Departments within that first hour.
"We need good ambulance cover in the County to deal with serious accidents or people becoming critical ill, in particular in the more remote areas of the County. With a high proportion of patients from Laois being sent directly or transferred to Tullamore or Dublin Hospitals, it is essential that the number of ambulances is increased," said Dep Stanley.
The TD said Sinn Féin’s Budget Submission for 2017 we provided for a costed and modest increase in the number of ambulances and paramedics in the regions outside of Dublin. This was in response to the gaps in the services being highlighted to us by frontline paramedics.
"Clearly Laois is less well served by the ambulance services and I am calling on Minister Harris to urgently review this under resourced service in Laois and to provide additional ambulances which are badly required,” concluded the TD.