More announcements on modular unit at STGH, but little delivery - says Cahill
Fianna Fáil TD, Jackie Cahill has said that while the announcement of a 40 bed modular unit at South Tipperary General Hospital is welcome, it is no replacement for a permanent increase in capacity at the hospital, and will do nothing to stem the trolley crisis that is coming down the line this winter.
Deputy Cahill was commenting after being informed by the Minister for Health of the proposed development of the modular unit this morning.
"12 months ago the people of South Tipperary were promised this by the same Minister who made today’s announcement, Simon Harris.
“Despite this long lead in time, planning permission has not be applied for, let alone granted by the County Council.
“This is just another empty announcement by a Government that is very quickly demonstrating that its focus is on spin rather than on delivery.
“While it is good news that the Minister is planning to develop a day ward at Our Lady’s Hospital in Cashel, it makes absolutely no sense to me that the Government and HSE are unwilling to allow it be used as a step down facility to help ease the pressure for acute beds at the General Hospital in Clonmel.
“Millions of euro were invested in Our Lady’s over the past five years, and it’s a crying shame to see the facilities not being used to their full potential.
“I am deeply concerned by the Minister’s statement this morning where he made no mention of the capital development at Saint Patricks and the contents of a parliamentary reply I received from the Minister.
“In that reply, I have been informed that no exact timeline can be given as to the opening date of the new Community Nursing Home on the grounds of St. Patrick’s Hospital in Cashel. This is very disappointing as, at present, the existing hospital is urgently in need of refurbishment and improvement.
“The Minister is hoping to open it by the end of 2021, a full four years away and this is assuming that there no planning or other delays.
“Fine Gael’s attitude to health care in Tipperary is at best lethargic. There doesn’t seem to be any great rush to address the major crises affecting the local hospitals. This cannot continue,” concluded Cahill.