Limerick TD asks Minister to support St John’s hospital plans

Computer generated image of the proposed 150-bed block at St John's Hospital.

A CALL has been made in the Dáil for Health Minister Stephen Donnelly to support plans by St John’s Hospital for a new 95-bed block on their existing Limerick city centre site.

Limerick Fianna Fáil TD Willie O’Dea asked the Minister if he would provide funding for the hospital’s proposal to build a new bed block.

He said the 95-bed unit would address the critical requirement to decompress the University Hospital Limerick (UHL) site by accommodating more medical patient transfers to St John’s.

Deputy O’Dea also asked the Minister for “his views on whether this proposed new bed block is essential in order to tackle public waiting lists”. 

In his response, Minister Donnelly outlined details of the capital projects already completed and in-progress at sites across the UL Hospitals Group (ULHG).

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He said that Ennis, Nenagh and St John’s hospitals appropriate patients from UHL every day.

“These patients can either be stepped down from an inpatient ward in UHL or they may, where a clinician has decided it is appropriate, transfer to Ennis, Nenagh, or St John’s directly from the emergency department in UHL.”

On the back of recent investments, consideration is also being given to future capacity requirements,” he said.

“It is noted that the University of Limerick Hospitals Group has developed proposals in this regard. These proposals will be considered by the hospital group and the HSE in line with their governance processes.”