Senator Frank Feighan today highlighted the need to advance the bed capacity plans for Sligo University Hospital with the Junior Minister for Health, Jim Daly.
Senator Feighan said: “Today in the Seanad, I asked Minister Daly, who was in attendance, to provide an update on plans to increase bed capacity at Sligo Hospital. My query came in light of Minister Simon Harris’s commitment to make significant extra provision for beds nationally.
“Sligo has lost 42 inpatient beds since 2004 and the increase in trolley pressures has presented a clear cut case for more bed capacity.
“This capacity challenge is set to become even greater as Ireland has an ageing population; it’s estimated that there will be a 40% increase in people aged 65 plus over the next 10 years.
“The recent Health Service Capacity Review identified that 2,600 additional acute hospital beds will be needed over the next ten years. And today I appealed directly to Minister Daly to ensure that Sligo Hospital gets its fair share of these additional beds.
“The Minister informed me today that the HSE has been working with Saolta Hospital Group on the development of specific proposals, which includes a new modular build for Sligo Hospital that would increase bed capacity by up to 52 inpatients beds.
“The Minister also said that the proposal in respect of Sligo is currently being assessed by the HSE in terms of its feasibility – staffing, costing, timeline and impact – with a view to bringing an overall plan to the Department for consideration and discussion with colleagues in Government.
“I made it clear that Sligo Hospital must be a beneficiary when it comes to the next phase in the allocation of extra beds; and I look forward to the provision of these beds in order to provide that vital additional capacity for the hospital,” Senator Feighan said.