THE University Maternity Hospital on the Ennis Road in Limerick is to be relocated to Dooradoyle, with the provision of state-of-the-art medical facilities. The announcement was part of the Government’s €27 billion capital plan announced today (Tuesdsay).
“I am delighted that under the Government’s six year capital plan Limerick will get a new maternity hospital, located on the main University Hospital site at Dooradoyle. This will mark a new era for maternity care in Limerick and surrounding counties and is very positive news,” commented Education Minister Jan O’Sullivan, following the Government announcement.
The current maternity hospital, which is also known by its former name of St Munchin’s, was commissioned in the 1960s, having been designed to cater for about 3,000 annual births. In recent years, it has dealt between 4,600 and 5,500 annual births. It is the fifth largest of the 19 maternity units in the country. In addition to its role in providing obstetric care to the women of Limerick, Clare and Tipperary, it has a major role in training student doctors and midwives at the University of Limerick and young doctors who are training to be specialists.
“Expert reports have strongly recommended the rapid phasing out of stand-alone maternity units because they lack some of the important facilities that complicated obstetric care requires, such as Intensive Care and High-Dependency Units, CT and MRI scans and immediate access to other medical specialists. This means that some critically ill mothers are transferred by ambulance to another hospital while their new-born infant has to stay in the maternity hospital. With the relocation of the maternity hospital to the main University Hospital campus Limerick will be at the forefront of maternity care provision,” stated Minister O’Sullivan.