Hospital finances fiasco puts a dent in FG’s economic credibility

The National Children’s Hospital costs overrun may have happened on the Minister for Health Simon Harris’ watch but Taoiseach Leo Varadkar is assuring the public that they will love it once it is built. Picture: Gareth Chaney/Collins

A coach and four has been driven through the image of fiscal virtue carefully constructed by the Taoiseach with the able assistance of his minister for finance. 

They can spin it any way they wish but the fiasco that has become the construction of the new National Children’s Hospital puts a deadly dent in their economic credibility.

Needless to say if they were pointing fingers in private the immediate target would be the Health Minister, Simon Harris. This extraordinary overspend has occured on his watch, but responsibility does not end with him.

During the meeting of the Oireachtas Health Committee on Wednesday, where the issue was under examination, Labour’s health spokesman Alan Kelly put words on the thoughts of many watching when he said we were in “Fr Ted territory”. 

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