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The UL Hospitals' Group Intermediate Care Facility (ICF) located in the UL Sport Arena was opened, by UL Clinical Director Paul Burke, President Dr Des Fitzgerald and Colette Cowan, CEO of UL Hospitals Group. Pic Sean Curtin True Media

Patients benefiting from holistic healthcare model

Patients in the Ul Hospitals Group (ULHG) Intermediate Care Facility (ICF) at the University of Limerick (UL) are benefiting from a holistic, multidisciplinary approach to their ongoing rehabilitation when they are transferred to the facility from the group’s acute hospitals.

The ICF was opened on June 8 in the reconfigured main hall of the UL Sport Arena, a fully equipped temporary hospital setting for non Covid-19 or post Covid-19 patients who no longer require acute medical attention, but who can benefit from ongoing rehabilitation and support before final discharge.

In the ICF rehabilitation is the primary focus, based on a rounded, holistic vision of healthcare and wellbeing. Medical and healthcare expertise is directed toward supporting the patient’s readiness for discharge, not just physically building their strength and communication skills, but also preparing them mentally and helping to ensure their home or residential care setting is optimised before their discharge.

The 68-bed ICF, which has capacity to scale up to 84 beds, grew out of the collaborative relationship between UL Hospitals Group and the University of Limerick, and was developed as a contingency solution to the patient flow and crowding challenges experienced in the region’s hospitals during the pandemic. It is expected to be in place until at least September with an option to extend until November.

The ICF is laid out in partitioned wards and fitted with ward support accommodation such as clean and dirty utilities, pharmacy, pantry, staff change, clinical treatment areas, two recreation areas, and four enclosed rooms. 

Numbers of patients at the ICF have increased steadily, and staffing has grown in line with this increase. As of this week, a total of 50 patients have benefited from rehabilitation at the ICF to date, and there are currently 31 patients being cared for in the facility.

 

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