Teresa Mannion of RTÉ did warn the nation: Don’t make unnecessary journeys! More than 1.5m people have seen her remixed weather report from the West of Ireland.

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Today, Beaumont Hospital joined her call and asked the nation not to make unnecessary journeys to the hospital, not to attend their Accident and Emergency Department, because it was unsafe to do so.

Today, there were 558 people on trolleys in Irish Hospitals.

Today, Pádraig went to pay his respects to his cousin, not much older then himself. He fully realised where he was and what was going on around him. I have no doubt about that. Inexplicably, his cousin had been discharged from hospital, he had lost contact with his family for a couple of days, and was subsequently found in the Liffey by a search party.

Today, I had another look at the editorial in The Irish Times of 02 January which quoted HSE Director Tony O’Brien as saying that there is “no plan, no money and no vision for health in Ireland”. The editor adding that, “somewhat bizarrely, Minister for Health Leo Varadkar agreed with him”.

The editor went on to say that the HSE’s “dysfunctional culture remains overly focused on the priorities of staff rather than on the needs of patients. This is best illustrated by by its failure, not for the first time, to fully spend its mental health budget. Although acknowledged by all as the under-funded Cinderella of the health system, the HSE’s inability to put scarce resources to work for the betterment of a vulnerable group in society is inexcusable.”

14 weeks ago yesterday, upon his return, by car and ferry, from Germany, where he had lived with us in an apartment for 9 months, Pádraig had to be admitted to hospital so that he could be assessed for a home care package by the HSE. Today, the HSE still have not submitted the application for the package to the relevant office – and have not given us a date by when that will happen.

Tonight, I continue to be shell-shocked by the death of Pádraig’s young cousin. One of the last things we remember him saying to us was that he hoped that Pádraig would get better.

When will they ever learn?

You tell me over and over and over again my friend,
ah, you don’t believe we’re on the eve of destruction.