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New A&E At UHL Expected To Be On Target

We understand that some €2.7 million required to finance the new emergency department at University Hospital Limerick (UHL) has not been as yet officially handed over.

The new hospital emergency department, which serves the Mid West Region, an area spanning 8,248 km², and which takes in the geographical borders of the combined counties of North Tipperary, Clare, & Limerick, remains just three weeks from its promised opening date of May 29th next.

Since the downgrading of Ennis and Nenagh Hospitals, the residents of Co. Clare and Tipperary North, have continued to allow themselves, from a medical care point of view, to be treated as second-class citizens. Already the promises made to provide this new A&E department at UHL has been delayed by two months, according to the UL Hospitals Group.

The Siren Study, which was set up to evaluate the development and performance of different emergency and urgent care systems (EUCS) has shown that medical patient survival rates for emergency cases, in the Mid West Region, are among the lowest in the country, tantamount to ‘death caused by geography’.

University Hospital Limerick (UHL) is second worst in the league of most overcrowded emergency departments in Ireland, according to recent figures released by the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organitation (INMO).

However despite the unexplained financial shortfall, we understand that Professor Colette Cowan, Group Chief Executive at UHL, together with hospital management, is committed to meeting the promised targeted opening date.

Some 94 extra staff have already been recruited for the new facility, but further interviews with nursing graduates, to fill posts, at the hospital are not planned until next month.

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