The new President of the Irish Medical Organisation (IMO) has called for an urgent increase in resources to tackle the mounting problems across the health services. Dr Ann Hogan was making her inaugural speech as President of the IMO at the organisation’s AGM in Galway. Dr Hogan likened the condition of the health services currently to a patient with chronic illness; “the health services isn’t suffering from a temporary illness…it is suffering from a long term, persistent Urgent increase in resources needed and severely debilitating illness caused by under-resourcing over decades and like any patient with chronic illness, the outlook is very difficult.” She said that the conference had highlighted the role that repeated underfunding over decades played in today’s health crises; “our problems today are an inevitable consequence of severe under funding of health services through the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s. UCC economist, Dr Brian Turner made it very clear in his contribution yesterday that we are still dealing with the consequences of those decades old decisions on resources and we will be forced to live with them for many years to come.” Dr Hogan also expressed concern at declining take up rates for vaccines in Ireland. A Community Medicine professional who oversees vaccination campaigns amongst other things, Dr Hogan expressed deep concern at the impact of social media campaigns and fake news about non existent risks from vaccinations; “uptake rates for the HPV vaccine amongst young girls are declining to a worrying extent on the back of fake news stories about nonexistent risks from vaccinations. As a result, we are putting the future health of young women at risk of cervical cancer and other ailments.” Turn to page 12 for full coverage from the AGM.