Minister Simon Harris on a visit to Clonmel hospital
The Minister for Health, Simon Harris, will make an announcement this morning that South Tipperary General Hospital in Clonmel, is to get a new 40-bed modular build extension to deal with chronic overcrowding.
It is expected that the new unit will be in place at some stage in 2018 , depending on planning matters, in a hospital which has experienced one of the highest rates of overcrowding in the country for the last few years with medical bed capacity running at 150%.
This week consultant Paud O Regan hit out at the “dangers and indignities” patients at the hospital had to endure.Almost a year ago Minister Harris visited the Clonmel hospital and said the conditions were “utterly unacceptable”.
It is understood that Minister Harris will announce today that the unit is part of a package of measures which aim to substantially expand the hospital’s capacity to treat patients.
He will confirm that the HSE has completed the fitting out of additional space for 11 trolley bays on the first floor of the hospital, the recruitment of staff to operate the new area is underway and it’s anticipated that this vital additional space will open next month.
Minister Harris will also outline specific supports for this hospital this winter: increased home care packages, increased access to diagnostics, aids and appliances to help patients who are well enough to return home or to a community setting to do so and improved patient flow in the ED.The Minister will also say that he is progressing plans for a day hospital in Cashel.
Minister Harris will visit St.Thereas’s Hospital in Clogheen this afternoon as well as visiting Circle of Friends in Tipperary before meeting hospital consultants and Oireachtas members in Tipperary Town.