St John’s seeking return of emergency department

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rp_hsesign.jpg MANAGEMENT at St John’s Hospital have formally requested that the hospital be upgraded in order to reinstate its Emergency Department and Intensive Care Unit.

The move comes as the University Hospital in Dooradoyle recorded a massive increase in the numbers of patients left on trolleys.

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St Johns was downgraded as part of a plan to centralise health services in the Mid West.

However, hospital management have now written to the HSE requesting to be upgraded to Class 3 status to relieve some of the pressure on the University Hospital Limerick in Dooradoyle.

Anti-Austerity Alliance Councillor Cian Prendiville, who is on the hospital’s board of management, explained: “What the hospital management have done is formally asked to be included in any review of services in the Mid West about the possibly upgrading of one of the Class 2 hospitals to a Class 3. They have confirmed to me that in any such review, they would be seeking to be upgraded back to a Class 3 hospital, restoring the A&E and ICU”.

He added: “St John’s, Ennis and Nenagh should all be put back to their previous status, and the experiment in centralisation abandoned.”

A HSE spokesperson told the Limerick Post they were currently unable to comment on the matter.

Cllr Prendiville also voiced his support for the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation’s call for an extra 70 beds to be made available at University Hospital Limerick.

“When St John’s, Ennis and Nenagh hospitals were downgraded, the government promised an extra 70 beds to help the Regional cope, but we are still waiting. They simply cut the services and ran. Now we are seeing the result of this, with a 20-fold increase in the number of patients on trolleys this July compared to 2007,” commented Cllr Prendiville.

He is also calling on staff and patients to build a campaign “to demand the extra funding and staff needed to address this crisis”.