DELIVERY of the modular units for the 60-Bed Ward Block at University Hospital Limerick has commenced today, Monday, February 3.
The €19.5 million project will begin to help address the acknowledged lack of bed capacity in the MidWest region. UL Hospitals Group and HSE Estates have confirmed the project is on schedule and say the beds will open before the end of 2020.
Colette Cowan, CEO, UL Hospitals Group, said work was progressing “well on the 60-Bed Block” for University Hospital Limerick, and with the arrival of the modular units “another milestone was reached”.
“We expect the beds will be available for patients before the end of this year after all the equipment has been installed and tested and all the staff recruited and trained,” she said.
The modular units are being delivered by a fleet of 40-foot articulated lorries. In order to reduce congestion in the area, no more than one lorry is permitted on the hospital grounds at any one time.
The units for hospital ward levels 1 to 3 have been prefabricated offsite and are being parked up in an area within a few miles of the hospital awaiting delivery.
The ward block will provide an additional 60 beds for the hospital, all single-patient rooms with ensuites. The additional single rooms will help to improve patient comfort, safety, privacy and dignity and assist with the management of infection control in the hospital.
UL Hospitals Group is currently finalising the details of a specific recruitment campaign for the approximately 140 whole-time equivalent staff required for this significant expansion of UHL’s bed capacity.
“This project will help considerably in reducing the long wait times experienced by too many of our patients, especially in our Emergency Department,” Ms Cowan said.
“However, it is acknowledged by all parties that more capacity is required in the MidWest,” Ms Cowen said, she continued, “It is important that we continue to progress the 96-bed Block which is included in the national development plan. A full design team has now been appointed for this project and a feasibility study is underway. We expect that a planning application will be lodged with Limerick City and County Council later this year,” she added.
The award of a public works contract to develop the 96-Bed Ward Block would be subject to capital funding availability.