The Health Service Executive has refused to say when or if it will publish an independent review into the Emergency Department at University Hospital Galway.
In a statement to the Galway City Tribune, the HSE said the report has been referred back to its authors “for factual accuracy checking”. The report has also been “referred for legal advice”.
The HSE did not directly address the question of if or when the report would be published.
Last week, the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) called on the HSE to publish the report. The union was backed by Derek Nolan, a Labour Party TD.
Independent Galway City councillor, Catherine Connolly, a General Election candidate, said that by failing to publish the report, management was giving the impression they had something to hide.
Failure to publish also gave the impression management was, “incapable of learning from mistakes”.
Cllr Connolly said it is her understanding that the report has identified changes that should be made to the Emergency Department to improve patient safety.
In response to queries, the HSE said: “An external review of the Emergency Department at University Hospital Galway was commissioned in 2015 following a series of conciliation conferences under the auspices of the Labour Relations Commission (LRC). It was agreed that this would be a useful way of identifying changes required to improve the working environment, patient safety and service delivery.
“The review was carried out by representatives of the Royal College of Nursing Northern Ireland and the Royal College of Emergency Medicine. The main purpose of the review was to identify good practice, identify areas that needed improvement and make recommendations to improve service delivery and patient safety. The draft report arising from this review has been referred back to the authors for factual accuracy checking. It has also been referred for legal advice.”
Gardaí bid to identify body recovered near Mutton Island
Gardai have launched an investigation following the discovery of a body in Galway Bay yesterday afternoon.
A member of the public raised the alarm after spotting the body in the water while walking on the causeway to Mutton Island.
Galway Fire Service, Gardai and the RNLI attended the scene and recovered the body at around 4pm, before it was taken to University Hospital Galway for a post mortem.
It is understood that the body may have been in the water for some time.
Gardaí are currently examining a list of missing people in the city.
Gardaí investigate fatal Carraroe crash
A man in his 30s has died following a road crash in Carraroe in the early hours of this morning.
At 3.50am, Gardaí and emergency services attended at a single car collision on a minor road.
The driver of the car, a man in his 30s, was pronounced dead at the scene a short time later. A passenger in the car, a male in his 30s, was taken by ambulance to Galway University Hospital. His injuries are not thought to be life threatening.
The road is currently closed and local diversions are in place. Garda forensic collision investigators will examine the crash site this morning.
Land Development Agency rules out Merlin ‘land grab’
From this week’s Galway City Tribune – Campaigners have warned the Land Development Agency (LDA) to keep its hands off Merlin Woods.
Local community group Friends of Merlin Woods said that the amenity on the east side of the city is not suitable for residential development.
It has sought clarification on whether the LDA has earmarked part of the recreational and amenity lands for housing, after it appeared on its online database of publicly-owned lands.
In a statement to the Galway City Tribune, the LDA said its database compiles a list of all State lands, not just land for development.
In relation to Merlin Woods, the LDA said: “Those lands aren’t included in the LDA developments in Galway. The lands database is a map-based tool which compiles all State lands and has no reflection on development potential.”
It came after Caroline Stanley of Friends of Merlin Woods raised concern that land within Merlin Woods had been earmarked for development.
“I’d be concerned that it’s marked as residential when it’s in RA (Recreational and Amenity) land. Some is marked ‘open space’ but some is marked as ‘new proposed residential’ on its [LDA’s] database. It makes us wonder why. We’d like clarity and to clear it up.
“The message we’d like to get out there is we need clarification, whether it’s a mistake on the Land Development Agency’s part, or whether it is an area that they consider as a residential area, which the community would be opposed to. We need clarity. It could be something that is in line for development later on, we don’t know, and we need clarity.”
Councillor Owen Hanley explained that the fears around Merlin Woods stem from legislation currently making its way through the Oireachtas that would strip councillors of powers to veto the transfer of land to the LDA for housing projects.
The Bill would also allow Government to direct what public lands – including those owned by local authorities – can be transferred to the LDA for development of social and affordable housing.
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.