Nothing less than a new hospital will do

Merlin Park Hospital

The west’s two most senior health managers have publicly backed a vision to build a new public hospital in Galway.

Head honchos from Saolta Hospital Group confirmed to a Dáil Committee that there is an “urgent need” to plan new acute hospital in Galway to serve the West of Ireland.

Clinical Director of Saolta, Dr Pat Nash and Saolta CEO, Maurice Power, argued the case for the, “need to develop a new acute care hospital in Galway to facilitate timely and effective tertiary level care for the population of the west/northwest of Ireland.”

They suggest a new hospital at Merlin Park.

In the briefing document, seen by the Connacht Tribune, Saolta concedes there is, “broad acknowledgement that the current public acute hospital infrastructure in Galway is wholly inadequate, outdated and not fit for purpose to facilitate the delivery of high quality, safe and effective acute healthcare for the acute care needs of the population of the west of Ireland.”

The group outlined how UHG has evolved into a major tertiary care centre for a much larger population of greater than 800,000 people to serve Galway, Mayo, Roscommon, Leitrim, Sligo and Donegal.

This has resulted in an increase in referrals to UHG, resulting in “major capacity pressures”, which limit its ability to “safely, effectively and timely” manage its twin requirements of being an acute care hospital for the secondary needs of adjacent counties and to provide rapid access for high complex tertiary level care.

The document admits UHG, which first opened in 1956, is “one of the most persistently overcrowded hospitals in the country with high trolley numbers and long waiting lists for elective procedures.”

See full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune.