A NEW report has revealed that Ireland has been in breach of the WHO contagious disease guidelines at its ports and airports for roughly a decade.
According to documents analysed by state broadcaster RTE, for roughly ten years Ireland’s ports and airports have been in breach of the World Health Organisation’s International Health Regulations (IHR) at the Republic’s ports and airports.
The WHO’s IHR rules state that a designated “competent authority” must be present in ports and airports to monitor the risk of an infectious disease entering the country. RTE found that, despite years of health authorities and government officials discussing the matter, no such “competent” health expert presence can be found in Ireland’s entry ports.
The International Health Regulations describe the role of a competent authority as: “An authority responsible for the implementation and application of health measures”. Their duties would include monitoring incoming travellers and freight, keeping port facilities in a “sanitary condition”, overseeing the decontamination of parcels.
Communications from the last number of years between officials seen by RTE show many medical experts venting their frustration at the lack of compliance and effort displayed by Irish transport hubs towards the IHR regulations.
The emerging scandal is the latest to emerge in the Republic of Ireland’s hugely mismanaged and underfunded health system. Despite being one of the world’s most successful countries, controversy after controversy has besieged the Irish health system over successive governments.
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