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Tag Archives: Ennis General Hospital

Timmy Dooley

Capital Plan to invest €6m in Clare healthcare facilities

THE 2021 Capital Plan has made an allocation of €6 million for health facilities in Clare, with six projects earmarked for investment this year. The blueprint unveiled by Health Minister Stephen Donnelly and seen by The Champion allocates €1.89m towards the provision for what is described as a “fit-for-purpose residential addiction treatment service” to replace the existing facilities at Bushy Park, outside Ennis. In respect of the replacement community nursing unit for St Joseph’s Hospital, which will comprise two 50-bed units on a green-field site, 75 of which will be long stay and 25 short stay, an allocation of €0.95m has been made by the Department of Health. Provision for the equipping of the new Out Patient Department (OPD) at Ennis General Hospital – which will include the provision of an X-ray room and other diagnostic facilities has been made and represents a spend this year of €0.44m. Meanwhile, Phase 1b of the redevelopment of Ennis General Hospital which will consist …

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No change to status of Ennis General despite upgrades

DESPITE a number of upgrades, Ennis General Hospital won’t see its former status return, and will remain a Model 2 facility, the Chief Clinical Director of the UL Hospitals Group (ULHG) has said. Professor Brian Lenehan told a briefing for local authority members that while new operating theatres are planned for the site in the county town, they won’t change the status of the facility within the hospitals group. He noted progress in a number of areas at Ennis General, including a new outpatient department which is now equipped and set to open in the first quarter of next year. “We will increase the range of services available in Ennis over the course of the year,” Professor Lenehan said. “The Medical Assessment Unit (MAU) and the Local Injuries Unit (LIU) will see upgrades. The MAU is now open seven days a week and sees 32 patients a day. University Hospital Limerick (UHL) would struggle without it.” Professor Lenehan described the …

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Expert panel reveals extent of Covid nursing home clusters

NEW figures reveal that Clare had the highest rate in Munster of Covid-19 cases in nursing homes, during the first wave of the pandemic. Data presented in the final report of the Nursing Homes Expert Panel show that this county had more than twice as many cases linked to care home clusters as Limerick. This is despite the fact that County Limerick had a far higher number of cases in the population as a whole (581) than Clare (371), in the period from March to June. Reacting to the figures, the Clare-based Chair of the Dáil Committee on Covid-19 Response confirmed that it will consider calling for a public inquiry into the fate of nursing home residents between March and May. Deputy Michael McNamara confirmed that the committee has invited members of the Expert Panel to appear before it on September 16, alongside representatives of the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA). “I don’t want to prejudge these hearings,” Deputy …

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McGettigan calls for Ennis General upgrade to respond to appointments backlog

A BACKLOG in elective medical procedures caused by Covid-19 restrictions means that Ennis General Hospital must be upgraded and have its 24/7 Emergency Department restored, Clare County Councillors have claimed. At the July meeting of the local authority, Councillor Donna McGettigan tabled a motion calling on the new health minister to upgrade the facility to a Model Three, meaning that it would have capacity to perform more complex procedures as well as having a round-the-clock Casualty Department. “The pandemic has brought a whole new urgency to the situation,” the Sinn Féin member said. “Around the country, there are 2,700 people waiting for urgent bowel cancer tests, 300 of them over 90 days. People are dying on waiting lists and we have to act otherwise people will suffer irreparable and life-changing damage. Ennis General really needs to be upgraded to respond to the situation.” The motion was seconded by Councillor Johnny Flynn. “As a member of the Ennis Hospital Action Group, …

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€350,000 physio investment in Ennis hospital

A €350,000 investment in a new physiotherapy department at Ennis Hospital is delivering for Clare patients in a variety of ways, according to hospital management. The department opened its doors in March 2015, following the redevelopment of a vacated area of the main hospital building. Patient response to the new department, now approaching its first full year of operation, has been very positive, says Niamh O’Shea, physiotherapy manager, Ennis Hospital. “We had been delivering a service in temporary accommodation, which was separate from the main hospital and which had a lot of limitations around space, access, comfort and privacy for our patients. While our patient satisfaction surveys for the services themselves were always high, we did receive negative feedback from patients about the environment. So the new modern department has replaced a building that was really not fit-for-purpose and represents a significant improvement in that respect,” said Ms O’Shea. As the old physiotherapy department was in temporary accommodation, not connected …

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Call goes out for hospital upgrade

Mayor of Ennis Johnny Flynn has led the call for a meeting with the new CEO of UL Hospital Group in a bid to secure a 24-hour emergency department at Ennis General Hospital. Another Ennis Municipal District Councillor, James Breen, has challenged the council members to hold a protest at the next meeting of the HSE and offered to lead the protest wherever the meeting is taking place. Professor Colette Cowan was appointed to head the hospital group last December and Councillor Flynn said it is time to take their case to the new CEO to try to put a stop to the drain of health expertise from the county into Limerick. Speaking at a Clare County Council meeting, Councillor Flynn said the drain of expertise began a decade ago with the set-up of the HSE and has snowballed to such an extent that stopping it is like trying to turn an oil tanker. “When you looked at the HSE …

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University Hospital Limerick.

Elderly woman’s 57-hour trolley ordeal

AS nurses in the Mid-West prepare to ballot for industrial action in the new year, an Ennis councillor has hit out at the HSE over plans to move patients from the overcrowded emergency department at the flagship hospital in Limerick, to ‘clinical assessment’ rooms at the downgraded University Hospital Ennis. Also, an Ennis man, whose 87-year-old mother was sent into University Hospital Limerick (UHL) to have a ‘racing-heart’ condition calmed down, has spoken of his horror at the conditions that she endured while she spent more than 57 hours on a trolley and a chair in a hallway and the “living hell” of patients and staff in the corridors of the hospital. “We went to our local GP last Tuesday and they were worried about her heart, which was racing, so they sent her into Limerick to maybe get them to slow it down with a beta blocker and calm it a bit,” he said. “We arrived at the emergency …

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