Plan for new Clifden hospital hits funding issues

St Anne's Community Nursing Unit in Clifden

Plans for a new 50-bed district hospital and nursing unit in Clifden – to be completed by the end of 2021 – have already hit a funding stumbling block.

The HSE is planning a prefabricated ‘modular’ building on the Westport Road on the site of St Anne’s Community Nursing Home.

It would involve the incorporation of the district hospital and the nursing unit, and had been expected to be completed within five years.

However, progress has stalled because the HSE cannot decide whether to proceed with its own funding or as a Public Private Partnership (PPP).

The problems were revealed in a response from St Anne’s management to a surprise inspection by the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA).

“There is a plan for a modular 50-bedded unit to incorporate St Anne’s plus the district hospital on the grounds of St Anne’s. This will be completed in 2021.

“I have spoken with the Estates Department in Merlin Park regarding the construction and consolidation of a 50-bedded community hospital on the grounds of St Anne’s, consolidating current St Anne’s and the district hospital and they informed me they are having difficulty in relation to plan, timescale and funding, as they are in negotiation with National Estates as to whether this project will be funded by direct HSE Capital Funding or through Public Private Partnership.

“Dependent on which route they take, this will reflect differently on both timescale and funding,” the report reads.