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  • Northside East

Capital plan boosts hospital projects

Monday, 9th September, 2019 8:00am
Capital plan boosts hospital projects

Beaumont Hospital.

Capital plan boosts hospital projects

Beaumont Hospital.

BEAUMONT Hospital is set for major improvements as part of the HSE Capital Plan. 

The plan provides for the spending of just over €2 billion on 250 health capital projects nationwide from 2019 to 2021.

Facilities for Beaumont Hospital will include:

• A new Cystic Fibrosis unit comprising 20 beds, which will cost over €10 million,

• A new Emergency Department,

• An upgrade of the Richmond ICU, and

• A Radiation Oncology project.

Minister for Disabilities Finian McGrath welcomed the funding announced for Beaumont Hospital and also €265 million for Refurbishing and Replacing Residencies for Older People and People with Disability.

“This is a great day for patients, families, staff and for the people of my constituency in Dublin Bay North,” said Minister McGrath. 

“I look forward to getting these projects up and running soon.” 

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Richard Bruton and Senator Catherine Noone (FG) said the announcement was a “landmark” moment for healthcare in Beaumont Hospital.

Minister Bruton said: “This investment will make a real difference to the health system here and will benefit the people of Dublin Bay North for years to come,” he said.

“I am committed to continuing to advocate for investment in our local health services and I am delighted to see this commitment from the Government.”

“For almost a decade investment in new health facilities was at half the level needed. Despite this it is a credit to those who work in our health services that almost a quarter of a million extra procedures have been carried out each year.”

Meanwhile, Sinn Féin’s health spokesperson Deputy Louise O’Reilly said there was a worrying lack of detail in the plan.

“Not only is the HSE Capital Plan for 2019 nearly nine months late, but many of the projects announced with the plan have already been announced or are currently underway,” she argued. “We have had to wait three quarters of the year to see the plan due to the chronic overspending on the National Children’s Hospital, and there is a worrying lack of detail within the plan itself.

“The plan also does little to address the huge overcrowding in our hospitals. Project Ireland 2040 gave a commitment to increase bed numbers by 2,600 acute beds over 10 years – a commitment of 260 beds per annum.

“However, the HSE Capital Plan 2019 outlines a delivery of 480 acute beds over three years – that’s only 160 additional beds per annum.”

The Department of Health said it has been working with the HSE and the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform to develop a multi annual capital plan for the health services in the context of the increased costs of the new children’s hospital project in 2019 and beyond.

“The Government provided additional capital funding in 2019 (€75 million) and has committed to provide the additional capital funding required in 2020 to cover the increased capital expenditure for the new Children’s Hospital in 2020,” said a department spokesperson.

“This allowed us to finalise a multi-annual Capital Plan. The increased capital funding provided by the Government has enabled the HSE to plan and fund progress in respect of the projects that were included in previous plans and to progress additional evaluated and prioritised projects in 2019 including Government priority programmes and major capital projects.

“Project Ireland 2040, incorporating the National Development Plan 2018-2027, will provide funding of €10.9 billion over the next decade to develop infrastructure, equipment and additional service capacity for the public health sector, in an ambitious plan to improve our health services and modernise how we deliver services through the implementation of Sláintecare.

“We must ensure that we carefully plan the use of this capital funding to meet population health needs and achieve value for money.”

The spokesperson added: “It is important to recognise that all capital development proposals, including the provision of additional acute hospital beds, must progress through detailed appraisal, planning, design and procurement, in line with the requirements of the Public Spending Code, before a firm timeline or funding requirement can be established.”

Minister for Health Simon Harris said: “As we reform the health service in line with Sláintecare, it is vital we continue to invest in capital infrastructure and crucially, invest in the community and social care settings.”

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