St Stephen’s in Glanmire chosen as site for new elective hospital

St Stephen’s in Glanmire chosen as site for new elective hospital

St Stephen’s Hospital in Glanmire will be formally approved by Cabinet as the location for Cork City’s new elective hospital in the coming days, the Irish Examiner can reveal.

The preferred site on the outskirts of the northside of Cork City is set to be chosen for one of three new elective hospitals being planned by the Government.

This is despite opposition from within the Government to the hospital being located on that site in recent months, with calls for it to be built at Curraheen, on the other side of the city.

Health Minister Stephen Donnelly  is due to sign off on three new elective hospitals in Cork, Galway, and Dublin as part of a Sláintecare strategy to address outpatient procedures and surgical waiting lists.

It is understood that he will seek approval to progress to the next stage of plans for the hospitals and once Cabinet signs off on it, which is expected in the next two weeks, the planning, procurement and related activity will then be able to progress the project further through the Public Spending Code.

The new hospital, once built, will have capacity for 180,000 procedures each year, and the need for the extra capacity is clear as demand for elective care is expected to increase by almost a third between now and 2035.

The hospital will include nine operating theatres and a further nine minor operation rooms, seven endoscopy suites, and a further six outpatient diagnostic suites.

It is envisaged it will employ over 300 staff once operational.

The new elective hospitals will provide additional capacity to remove pressure on already struggling emergency departments.

It will ensure delivery of planned care such as surgical procedures and diagnostic tests that are not interrupted by unscheduled outbreaks or spikes in emergency presentations.

Speaking in the Dáil on Wednesday, Taoiseach Micheál Martin said that he will take the issue “by the scruff of the neck” and will be in a position to sign off on it next week.

“Government will take a decision next week. The memo is coming to Cabinet,” he said.

The hospital will include nine operating theatres and a further nine minor operation rooms, seven endoscopy suites, and a further six outpatient diagnostic suites.

“I’ve been a strong advocate for this and we’ve taken very strong measures to make sure this project was progressed, because it was hanging around for too long.”

He said that despite an announcement of a second hospital for Cork five or six years ago, very little had happened since.

“We’re taking this by the scruff of the neck to say we want elective hospitals in Cork, Galway and Dublin.

“And subsequently we need one in Limerick I reckon as well.

“We have to be subject to the public spending code and that’s what’s been progressing up to now. So we will be in a position to sign off on this next week.”

There has been some disagreement between local Fine Gael representatives on the location of the elective hospital, with Cork North Central TD Colm Burke supporting the St Stephen’s site and his party colleague,senator Jerry Buttimer, saying the hospital should be built in Curraheen, on the other side of the city.

Mr Buttimer has said the hospital should be located close to Cork University Hospital, and cited co

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