A whistleblower working for Ireland’s Department of Health alleges that there was a lack of financial reporting with regards to funds given to the Health Service Executive, the country’s healthcare system.
According to an article in the Irish Examiner, the whistleblower alleges that “there are gaping holes in the financial reporting in respect of hundreds of millions of euros poured into the health service.” In 2020, at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the HSE was granted €514.5m. The article states that the whistleblower “documented an internal department meeting in June of last year” in which the €514.5m funding was analyzed. The whistleblower said that it was “extraordinary” that “the Department of Health was unsure if the additional €514.5m had been necessary.”
The whistleblower claims that the Department of Health “neither asked the HSE to account for what the €514.5m was needed for, nor whether the money had actually been used for that purpose.” At the time the article was published, the HSE said that it was “unaware of these claims and has no comment to make on them.” The Department of Health did not reply to inquiries about the whistleblower complaints, the Irish Examiner reports.
The whistleblower also alleged that “the €73m Temporary Assistance Payments Scheme (TAPS) was being used to purchase ‘One for All’ vouchers for frontline workers in nursing homes.” The article states that these alleged practices have “a potential liability of €12m.” Additionally, the whistleblower alleged that one manager did not seem to care about the “inappropriate use of the scheme to acquire vouchers.”