Dáil debates

Wednesday, 25 September 2019

Saincheisteanna Tráthúla - Topical Issue Debate

Hospital Accommodation Provision

2:05 pm

Photo of Michael HartyMichael Harty (Clare, Independent) | Oireachtas source

The issue in Limerick is much wider than the emergency department. It appears in the emergency deparment, but the problem is not confined to it. Rather, it is much wider within the hospital. There is a need for an expansion of the number of consultant staff in the hospital and ophthalmology services. One can wait three and a half years following the diagnosis of a cataract to see a consultant, not to mention waiting for a surgical procedure. In urology, one can wait six months for an investigation when one has symptoms that indicate a high likelihood of cancer. There is only one endocrinologist in the mid-west for 400,000 people, which diminishes the treatment of diabetes, in particular, and all other endocrinology problems. Ear, nose and throat, ENT, treatment is a case in point, where there is a significant problem. Limerick Regional Hospital has lost its recognition for higher professional ENT training since 2014. One can wait an inordinate length of time just to have one's tonsils removed or grommets put in one's ears. One of the issues that needs to be resolved is the devolution of services to model 2 hospitals within the mid-west, particularly in Ennis, where two modular theatres should be provided to allow for the provision of day care services. I refer to ENT day care services, in particular, which are essential to relieve the pressure on Limerick Regional Hospital.


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