I have campaigned for a new hospital for a very long time and certainly from the day I was elected on to the Regional Health Forum in 2006. It is now time for all Galway West TDs to stand together and ensure that such a hospital is constructed.
See Press Release below.
Press Release 15th May 2016-Deputy Connolly very much welcomes acknowledgement by the Clinical Director of University College Hospital Galway that a new hospital is required.
Catherine Connolly TD says she very much welcomes the acknowledgement by the Saolta Group and the Clinical Director of University College Hospital that a new hospital is required for Galway City.
She said she has campaigned for a new hospital for years and particularly over her ten year period as a City Councillor on the Regional Health Forum. Rather than commit to a new hospital in a planned and timely manner however senior management at the hospital along with each new government in power refused to even contemplate such a development. Instead new wings and new buildings were constructed on an already congested site and in an ad hoc manner and under pressure in response to each crisis arising. Indeed the Helicopter Pad had to be temporarily moved into the Shantalla Community Park at a cost of approximately 250,000 Euro to facilitate the construction of a temporary car park which will not add one additional car parking space to the site. In addition planning permission has been given for a 50 bedded Mental Health Unit which had sense prevailed should have been constructed in Merlin Park. Furthermore a 50 bedded replacement ward along with a new 75-bed ward block is also planned resulting in only 25 extra beds!
Deputy Connolly said she repeatedly spoke out against such ad hoc planning and the lack of political will to actually face what was required which was a new hospital.
Finally she said it seems sense has prevailed and at a Briefing for Public Representatives last Friday afternoon, both the Clinical Director and the Manager of University College Hospital Galway both openly acknowledged that planning should immediately begin for a new hospital. Moreover both acknowledged that all planned construction works are simply fire fighting and crisis driven.
Indeed they also confirmed that on the risk register compiled as part of the Management’s statutory duty, the biggest risk is lack of capacity!
Deputy Connolly said their frank acknowledgement that a new hospital is absolutely necessary was refreshing and it now time for Galway West TDs to work together and ensure that a new hospital becomes a reality-Indeed given that capacity is the biggest risk on the Risk Register, the government must now act under Health and Safety she said.