Classifieds Advertise Archive Subscriptions Family Announcements Photos Digital Editions/Apps
Connect with us

CITY TRIBUNE

Islanders claim health centre is no longer fit for purpose

Published

on

Islanders on Inishbofin are urgently calling for a new health centre as the current structure, built in the 1970s as a temporary facility, is covered in mould, and according to angry locals is “sub-standard” and “not fit for purpose”.

The HSE has allocated €40,000 to revamp the current pre-fab building – but residents insist that it has gone beyond repair.

Mother-of-three Tara McMahon is among those who insists it’s “not fit for purpose”. She and another local woman, Veronica Cunnane, who describes the building as “a disgrace”, have had negative experiences with the building.

Tara moved to Inishbofin in 2012 and when she first saw the health centre, she thought it was used for storage. She “couldn’t believe it” when she learned it was the health centre.

Tara’s three children are aged four, two and 10 months, and the youngest developed a very bad cough at the age of twelve weeks. Tara’s concern, as they sat in the waiting room, was that the baby “could end up leaving here even sicker than she was coming in”.

She feels that the fact that islanders have to cope with such “totally substandard facilities,” shows a lack of support for a thriving, vibrant community.

Veronica describes the building as “unsightly,” and says its wheelchair ramp is a safety hazard. Her father goes there twice a week and “access up that ramp isn’t great for him”.

The main concern for the nurses and residents is that the health centre is covered in mould which has created mould spores. These are so small they can’t be seen, but according to Tara and Veronica, there’s a distinct smell of mould spores and dampness.

Roughly 20% of the population are allergic to mould spores. As well as causing allergic reactions, some species contain toxic compounds which can cause headaches, fatigue, running nose, sneezing, coughing and more seriously, pneumonia and asthma.

Young children, the elderly and people undergoing medical treatment are particularly susceptible to mould spores – and all of these groups regularly use Inishbofin’s health centre.

Veronica believes that the allocated €40,000 “won’t go far” to fix up the building. Because it’s extremely difficult to dispose of mould spores completely, she feels the HSE should knock the centre and starting from scratch.

Seven years ago, the Government allocated money to build a new centre but the HSE didn’t act and planning permission has now expired. More recently, the HSE claimed there’s a risk of flooding on the site that was earmarked for the new centre, making it no longer suitable.

Two nurses alternate working on the Island and for the last 40 years, properties have been rented out for their accommodation.

Last September, when a HSE representative deemed the health centre was no longer suitable, a decision was made to move to the now unoccupied Parochial House and locals say some €24,000 was pumped into that building. However, while it was suitable as a health centre, nurses’ accommodation became a problem.

The living room of the Parochial House was transformed into a patients’ waiting room, and as a result, accommodation for nurses was limited to just one bedroom and a kitchen. That meant that every time the nurses changed rosters, they’d have to pack their belongings and move them elsewhere.

Fianna Fáil Galway West TD and Spokesperson on Island Affairs Éamon Ó Cuív agrees, describing the state of the health centre as “inexcusable”.

He acknowledges that the only solution is to build a new health centre. “I will continue to pursue the issue as I have before,” he promised.

“A functioning health centre should be a basic requirement, not a perceived luxury,” he added.

CITY TRIBUNE

Mercury hit 30°C for Galway City’s hottest day in 45 years

Published

on

From this week’s Galway City Tribune –

Wednesday was the hottest day in the city over the past 45 years when with a high of 30.1 Celsius being recorded at the NUI Galway Weather Station.

The highest temperature ever recorded in the city dates back to June 30, 1976, when the late Frank Gaffney had a reading of 30.5° Celsius at his weather station in Newcastle.

Pharmacists and doctors have reported a surge in people seeking treatment for sunburn.

A Status Yellow ‘high temperature warning’ from Met Éireann – issued on Tuesday – remains in place for Galway and the rest of the country until 9am on Saturday morning.

It will be even hotter in the North Midlands, where a Status Orange temperature warning is in place.

One of the more uncomfortable aspects of our current heatwave has been the above average night-time temperatures and the high humidity levels – presenting sleeping difficulties for a lot of people.
This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of the story, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

Continue Reading

CITY TRIBUNE

Property Tax hike voted down in Galway City

Published

on

From this week’s Galway City Tribune – A proposal to boost Galway City Council coffers by half a million euro every year by increasing Local Property Tax (LPT) did not receive the support of city councillors.

Councillor Peter Keane (FF) failed to get a seconder at this week’s local authority meeting for his motion to increase the LPT payable on Galway City houses by 5%.

Cllr Keane said that the increase would net the Council €500,000 every year, which could be spent evenly on services across all three electoral wards.

It would be used to fund services and projects city councillors are always looking for, including a proposal by his colleague Cllr Imelda Byrne for the local authority to hire additional staff for city parks.

The cost to the taxpayer – or property owner – would be minimal, he insisted.

“It would mean that 90% of households would pay 37 cent extra per week,” he said.

Not one of the 17 other elected members, including four party colleagues, would second his motion and so it fell.

Another motion recommending no change in the current rate of LPT in 2022 was passed by a majority.
This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of the story, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

Continue Reading

CITY TRIBUNE

Galway City Council needs 40 more workers to help deliver on projects

Published

on

From this week’s Galway City Tribune –  Forty more workers are needed at City Hall ‘right away’, the Chief Executive of Galway City Council has said.

Brendan McGrath has warned city councillors that the local authority is understaffed and it needs to hire more staff immediately to deliver its plans and projects.

The total cost of the extra 40 workers, including salary, would be between €1.75 million and €1.95 million.

Mr McGrath said that the City Council had a workforce now that was below what it had in 2007, but the city’s population has grown and so too had the services the Council provides.

The population of Galway City grew by almost 11% in the 10 years to 2016, he said, and total staff numbers in the Council fell by 13.6% during that period.

Though more staff were hired in recent years, Mr McGrath said that the Council was at 2007 and 2008 staffing levels, even though the Census will record further increases in population since 2016.

Mr McGrath said that the City Council now provides 1,000 services across a range of departments, far more than during the 2000s.

He said that currently, 524 staff are employed at the City Council. This equated to 493 Whole Time Equivalents when part-time workers such as school wardens and Town Hall workers are included.

Mr McGrath said that 12% of all staff are in acting up positions, with many more in short-term or fixed-term contracts. There was a highly competitive jobs market and the Council was finding recruitment and retention of specialist staff difficult.
This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of the story, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

Continue Reading

Local Ads

Local Ads

Advertisement
Advertisement

Facebook

Advertisement

Trending