Roscommon’s empty surgical ward must be included in hospital bed expansion – Naughten

In East Galway, East-Roscommon, Health, Local Issues, Mid-Roscommon, News, North-Roscommon, Posts by Topic, South Roscommon, West-Roscommon by Denis Naughten

Local TD Denis Naughten has called on the Minister for Health to ensure a surgery ward at Roscommon University Hospital which remains empty, is included in Government plans for 1,500 new hospital beds across the country.


“The HSE has issued a tender for 1,500 new hospital beds at 15 sites across the country and it is imperative that the empty state-of-the-art ward that has been lying idle in the hospital since 2018, is now fitted out and staffed as part of these national plans,” said Denis Naughten.


“The HSE tender seeks to have the new beds delivered within 75 weeks using modular building and off-site manufacturing, but in the case of Roscommon University Hospital the shell of the ward adjoining the theatres has been completed since 2018 and could immediately provide an increased number of surgical procedures for patients on waiting lists throughout the West of Ireland.


“We have patients from across the region and across the middle of the country who are in pain and on waiting lists. Some are waiting, sadly, to go to private hospitals via the National Treatment Purchase Fund, (NTPF) to access treatment that could easily be available at Roscommon University Hospital if the funding was provided to fit out this surgical ward.”


With the increase in beds at Roscommon University Hospital procedures which could be performed would be high volume, low-to-medium complexity surgeries which can be efficiently planned with dedicated theatres in the hospital. Roscommon University Hospital could then focus on reducing the current backlog in day cases, GI Endoscopy, minor operations, outpatient treatment and outpatient diagnostics services.


“The room in question was completed as part of the development of the endoscopy suite and officially opened by Minister Simon Harris in 2018, yet this room remains empty. Today, it is being used for the storage of hospital beds and medical equipment, while the HSE is planning to spend up to €1bn on 1,500 additional hospital beds,” stated Denis Naughten.


“Roscommon University Hospital has the skilled staff needed to increase the number of surgeries at the hospital, but the big bottleneck is the number of surgical beds available there, and yet we have a section of the hospital empty for the last five years which could provide 12 additional beds at the stroke of a pen.


“Now that Government is proceeding with a planned 1,500 hospital bed expansion it must move on an additional 12 surgical beds at Roscommon University Hospital as soon as possible,” concluded Denis Naughten.