An eminent doctor appointed by Simon Harris to the Medical Council two years ago has resigned in protest at the government’s alleged “blunder” in regard to nursing homes.
Dr Marcus de Brun, who runs the Rush Family Practice in Co Dublin, also holds a degree in Microbiology from Trinity College Dublin.
His letter of resignation accused the Minister of Health of failing in his obligations to the people of Ireland. He described the management of the Covid-19 crisis as “the biggest political blunders in the history of the Irish State”. Dr de Brun said those most at risk have “featured as something of an afterthought” to the HSE in the pandemic.
“Unquestionably the most vulnerable cohort of patients in Ireland are those residents of Nursing Homes. This fact should have been entirely obvious to all involved in the management of the crisis,” he wrote.
“Most of these individuals are of course elderly and most have significant underlying health conditions. Nursing home residents cannot or could not be expected to avail of the same measures applied to the general public,” Dr de Brun said.
“It beggar’s belief, and remains an evolving tragedy, that these vulnerable people were not considered as the first priority for the state, rather than being the last to be considered.”
The medical expert also revealed that guidelines were used to refuse elderly people being tested in nursing homes.
“Up until 9/4/2020, nursing home residents were refused testing in nursing homes where Covid-19 had already been detected. Nursing home staff were advised: ‘ to presume everybody has it’. Residents who had been booked for testing by their GP’s were
summarily removed from the queue for testing, without the requesting GP even being informed.
“Only on the 9/4/2020, after an outcry from some GP’s and Nursing Home Managers, was this rule/guideline changed. On 9/4/2020 GP’s around Ireland were contacted and requested to ‘reapply’ for testing, for those residents who’s test requests had simply been erased,” he revealed.