Ten short term respite beds have been re-opened in the Thurles Community Hospital of the Assumption, The Tipperary Star can confirm following an order given by Health Minister James Reilly through the HSE.
Minister Reilly visted the hospital during the summer and was hugely impressed with what he saw. And, he committed to re-opening ten beds as part of the process of getting the state-of-the-art hospital back to full working capacity.
Deputy Michael Lowry who described the closure of the 22 beds in this vital facility as a travesty and stated that it is shameful to see valuable beds still lying idle when there are countless patients in the Thurles region in need of the service, has welcomed the return of then of those beds.
“The return of these beds is, of course, hugely welcome and will be of benefit to the Thurles and surrounding areas. However this announcement has been repeated on a number of occasions and it is my belief that the focus must now return to the remainder of the 22 beds that are still closed to the public. Ten beds have been returned and a further 5 re-opened due to the diligence of the staff. That still leaves 7 beds that have been closed by the Government. There is an enormous demand for these short stay beds and it is my belief that the full complement must be restored as a priority.It is imperative that the remainder of the closed beds are returned to the hospital, for the benefit of the community as swiftly as possible,” Deputy Lowry said.
Junior Minister Alan Kelly also expressed his delight that the beds have been re-opened stating, “I very much welcome this as it was committed to as part of a plan to turn around elderly care services in North Tipperary. The move has resulted in 11 new staff coming into Thurles. These are 5 new nurses and 6 new attendants. These 10 beds will provide much needed short term stay for local people in Tipperary, particularly those recovering from hospital appointments and in need of rehabilitation. Furthermore it will provide respite care for families. Further to this the bed compliment has been increased to up to 27 beds in both the Dean Maxwell in Roscrea and Conlon’s Home in Nenagh. Additional staffing and investment has been put into these locations as well,” Minister Kelly said.