Written answers

Thursday, 17 December 2020

Rose Conway-Walsh (Mayo, Sinn Fein)
Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

614. To ask the Minister for Health the number of persons waiting on lists as both inpatients and outpatients for Mayo University Hospital; the average wait time; the number waiting more than one, two, three and four years, respectively; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [44591/20]

Rose Conway-Walsh (Mayo, Sinn Fein)
Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

615. To ask the Minister for Health the wait time for outpatient appointments at Mayo University Hospital and University Hospital Galway, respectively; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [44592/20]

Rose Conway-Walsh (Mayo, Sinn Fein)
Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

616. To ask the Minister for Health the number of children on the waiting list to see a paediatrician in County Mayo; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [44593/20]

Rose Conway-Walsh (Mayo, Sinn Fein)
Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

617. To ask the Minister for Health the number of children awaiting an outpatient appointment at Mayo University Hospital and University Hospital Galway; the comparison to the same period in 2019; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [44594/20]

Photo of Stephen DonnellyStephen Donnelly (Wicklow, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

I propose to take Questions Nos. 614 to 617, inclusive, together.

It is recognised that waiting times for scheduled appointments and procedures have been impacted as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In response to the Covid-19 pandemic the HSE had to take measures to defer most scheduled care activity in March, April, and May of this year. This was to ensure patient safety and that all appropriate resources were made available for Covid-19 related activity and time-critical essential work. This decision was in line with the advice issued by the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) in accordance with the advice of the World Health Organisation.

Patient safety remains at the centre of all hospital activity and elective care scheduling. To ensure services are provided in a safe, clinically-aligned and prioritised way, hospitals are following HSE clinical guidelines and protocols.

The HSE continues to optimise productivity through alternative work practices such the use of alternative settings including private hospitals, community facilities and alternative outpatient settings.

In addition the National Treatment Purchase Fund (NTPF) is currently reviewing strategies to maximise activity and benefit for patients, to include, increased use of private hospitals, funding weekend and evening work in public hospitals, funding “see and treat” services where minor procedures are provided at the same time as outpatient consultations, funding hybrid services where public and private hospitals contribute to the treatment of patients, virtual clinics and clinical validation.

The information requested by the Deputy concerning Mayo University Hospital (MUH) and Galway University Hospital (GUH) is outlined in the attached documents. This information shows the number of patients on IPDC and OPD waiting lists waiting over 1,2,3 & 4 years at MUH and average wait time; the wait time for OPD at MUH & GUH; the number of children on MUH and GUH OPD waiting list for 2020 and 2019; the number of children on paediatric waiting lists by area of residence in Co. Mayo.

The Deputy should note that GUH are currently upgrading their waiting list systems and they have been unable to provide up to date Outpatient Waiting List details. The last update provided to NTPF was archived at the beginning of October 2020. It is anticipated that this matter will be resolved shortly.

[href="https://data.oireachtas.ie/ie/oireachtas/debates/questions/supportingDocumentation/2020-12-17_pq614a-17-12-2020_en.xlsx">Table A</a>]

[href="https://data.oireachtas.ie/ie/oireachtas/debates/questions/supportingDocumentation/2020-12-17_pq614b-17-12-2020_en.xlsx">Table B</a>]

Rose Conway-Walsh (Mayo, Sinn Fein)
Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

618. To ask the Minister for Health the number of persons waiting to access the national counselling service by county; the average wait time; the number of persons waiting over one year by county; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [44595/20]

Photo of Mary ButlerMary Butler (Waterford, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

As this is a service matter, I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond directly to the Deputy as soon as possible.

Rose Conway-Walsh (Mayo, Sinn Fein)
Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

619. To ask the Minister for Health the number of persons waiting for cataracts surgery by county; the average wait time; the number waiting over one, two, three and four years, respectively by county; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [44596/20]

Photo of Stephen DonnellyStephen Donnelly (Wicklow, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

In recent years, my Department has worked with the HSE and the National Treatment Purchase Fund (NTPF) to improve access for patients waiting for high volume procedures, including cataracts. Ophthalmology services are provided throughout all hospital groups in the country, with cataract removal one of the key procedures carried out as part of this specialty.

A key development in improving access to Ophthalmology services was the opening of a stand-alone high-volume consultant-led cataract theatre by the University of Limerick Hospital Group in Nenagh Hospital in 2018, with the intention that it would facilitate patients from surrounding geographical areas to avail of their treatment there. The impact of such initiatives can be seen in the reduction in the waiting times to access cataract procedures since 2018. At the end of November 2020 there were 4,186 patients waiting compared to 6,378 in November 2018.

In considering these figures it is important to recognise that waiting times for scheduled appointments and procedures have been impacted as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic this year. The HSE had to take measures to defer most routine scheduled care activity in March, April, and May. This was to ensure patient safety and that all appropriate resources were made available for Covid-19 related activity and urgent time-critical work. This decision was in line with the advice issued by the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) in accordance with the advice of the World Health Organisation.

Patient safety remains at the centre of all hospital activity and elective care scheduling. To ensure services are provided in a safe, clinically-aligned and prioritised way, hospitals are following HSE clinical guidelines and protocols. The HSE continues to optimise productivity through alternative work practices such the use of alternative settings including private hospitals, community facilities and alternative outpatient settings.

In addition the NTPF is currently reviewing strategies to maximise activity and benefit for patients, to include increased use of private hospitals, funding weekend and evening work in public hospitals, funding “see and treat” services where minor procedures are provided at the same time as outpatient consultations, funding hybrid services where public and private hospitals contribute to the treatment of patients, virtual clinics and clinical validation.

The cataract data requested by the Deputy is outlined in the attached documents. This data contains the number of patients waiting over 1, 2, & 3 years on the cataract waiting list by county and the average number of days waiting by county.

Rose Conway-Walsh (Mayo, Sinn Fein)
Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

620. To ask the Minister for Health the number of persons waiting for physiotherapy services by county; the average wait time; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [44597/20]

Rose Conway-Walsh (Mayo, Sinn Fein)
Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

621. To ask the Minister for Health the number of children waiting for physiotherapy services by county; the average wait time; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [44598/20]

Photo of Stephen DonnellyStephen Donnelly (Wicklow, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context | Oireachtas source

I propose to take Questions Nos. 620 and 621 together.

As this is a service matter, I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond to the deputy directly, as soon as possible.

Comments

No comments

Log in or join to post a public comment.