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Uproar over plan to close theatre at Merlin Park despite refurbishment work of 200,000 euro

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – Saolta officials have been criticised over plans to close the existing orthopaedic surgery theatre at Merlin Park Hospital once the two new modular theatres come onstream.

The hospital’s two theatres were shut down in 2017 following leaks.

Since then, only one has re-opened following repair works, and waiting lists have continued to grow sharply due to the lack of facilities.

Almost 200 thousand euro was spent on roof repairs for one theatre along with internal upgrades to bring it up to standard on current infection control measures.

A planning application for the new modular builds was submitted before Christmas, but the project has run into difficulties.

Saolta officials have confirmed that an issue with the company selected to provide the builds, along with a request from the City Council for further information on the planning application is causing the delay in the project.

Speaking at this week’s Regional Health Forum, Saolta Chief Operations Officer, Ann Cosgrove, says if planning permission is granted, the new theatres will be completed within 7 to 9 months.

When questioned, the C.O.O. said the current theatre will not be used once the two new modular builds come onstream, but may be considered for further patient services in the future. For more on this story tune in to Galway Bay fm news on the hour…

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10,414 new cases of Covid-19 nationwide

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Statement for the National Public Health Emergency Team

The Health Protection Surveillance Centre has today been notified of 5,605* confirmed cases of COVID-19.

In addition, on Tuesday 25 January, 4,809** people registered a positive antigen test through the HSE portal.

There has been a total of 6,136 deaths related to COVID-19 notified in Ireland. This includes 49 deaths newly notified in the past week (since last Wednesday).

As of 8am today, 739 COVID-19 patients are hospitalised, of which 74 are in ICU.

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Galway TD critical of Government inaction on violence against women over past 20 years

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – A Galway TD has sharply criticised the Government in the Dáil over its ongoing failure to take meaningful action to tackle violence against women over the past two decades

Deputy Catherine Connolly noted that the death of Ashling Murphy has been described as a “watershed” moment by many, that has shone a spotlight on the issue.

However, she said countless spotlights have been shone on the issue over the past two decades, yet very little effective actions have been taken.

She cited a Government-commissioned report issued in 1997 that outlined the need for greater supports for women, as well as programmes for violent men that tackle their behavior.

Deputy Connolly argued we’ve known the exact scale of the problem for the past 25 years – yet the Government has done very little to address it.

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NUIG Student Union highlights availability of safety and door alarms

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The Student Union at NUI Galway has moved to highlight the availability of various safety alarms and door alarms for purchase at its shop.

The union is creating awareness of safety measures in light of the tragic death of Aisling Murphy in Tullamore.

It comes as hospitality has fully reopened with greater numbers of students socialising at night.

Vice President Cora Clarke says the alarms are available at no major cost and may make many feel safer.

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