asked the Minister for Health if in view of the stated buoyancy of the national Income and of Hospital Sweeps Funds he will take steps to ensure that hospitals do not continue to send members of the nursing profession to waste valuable time and energy selling badges on street corners for objectives which could more readily be paid for in many other ways.
Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Selling of Badges in aid of Hospitals.
I presume the Deputy is referring to efforts made on occasion by voluntary hospital authorities to raise funds in the way which he mentions. As I stated recently in the course of an address which I gave at the opening of the new Regional Maternity Hospital at Limerick, there is, in my opinion, room for a considerably increased effort on the part of voluntary hospitals to meet a fair share of the cost of their new building schemes. Rather, therefore, than take any action which might tend to discourage hospital authorities from using a proper measure of initiative in the matter of raising funds, I feel it incumbent upon me to foster and encourage any appropriate efforts on their part which are directed towards this end.
Would the Minister inquire from these hospitals, why, if they are not prepared to send out their consultant surgeons and physicians with stethoscopes and surgical kit around street corners to sell badges, they send members of the nursing profession?
Would the Minister convey to the hospitals concerned an apology on behalf of the House for the offensive innuendoes contained in the Question?
Offensive, my foot! Are you always to go hat in hand, begging?