A CORK North Central TD has said he is hopeful that the HSE will be able to appoint a permanent replacement for a GP service in Blarney.
It comes following the news that Ashdale Centre in Blarney is to lose its only GP at the end of the month.
Fianna Fáil TD Pádraig O'Sullivan said that he is confident at present that a permanent replacement will be secured, but that a new GP may wish to open up in a different premises in Blarney.
"If a new GP is found, and I’m confident enough that it will be based on the fact that someone has already been interviewed and there are a few other expressions of interest, the thing to bear in mind is that the Ashdale House building is fairly small and that’s not to say that any new GP wouldn’t take on the same building but they might go to a new premises. But it will be Blarney based, we’re being told," Mr O'Sullivan said.
In the interim, he said, GMS cardholders have been assured that a service in Ballincollig is being provided and that this will remain in place until the recruitment campaign concludes.
When a new GP is hopefully found, Mr O'Sullivan said this would be open to both public and private patients.
Meanwhile, Sinn Féin TD Thomas Gould pointed to the lack of a direct public transport link between Blarney and Ballincollig and raised concerns about people having to travel to access healthcare.
"We’re raising it again and we’re asking the HSE to reconsider the closure of Ashdale.
"They said they’re looking at getting a full-time GP in there but my worry is that once something closes, it’s very hard to get it reopened," he continued.