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Pictured at the official opening of a new building at the Mater Hospital is Minister Paschal Donohoe, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, CEO of the Mater Hospital Alan Sharp, Director of Nursing Mary Raferty, Minister Stephen Donnelly Finbarr O'Rourke
rock wing

New nine-storey wing of Mater Hospital has been officially opened

There is no set date for when the new wing will be up and running, as 400 staff have yet to be recruited.

LAST UPDATE | 20 Apr 2023

TAOISEACH LEO VARADKAR, Health Minister Stephen Donnelly and Public Expenditure Minister Paschal Donohoe have officially opened a new nine storey building at the Mater Misericordiae University Hospital in Dublin today.

The Rock Wing will have 98 new beds, including 16 new intensive care unit beds and a new home for the National Isolation Unit. 

There is no set date for when the new wing will be up and running, as 400 staff have yet to be recruited.

Donnelly today said that from speaking with recruiters, there has been a “strong response” to the available positions.

He added that the state of the art facilities will make the jobs an “easy sell”, particularly to international health professionals.

The building has been designed, built and delivered on budget in two years under emergency legislation enacted during the first part of the Covid pandemic.

The Rock Wing, named after Sister Margherita Rock, will cater for an additional 5,000 patients annually.

Sr Rock was a member of the Congregation of the Sisters of Mercy, which founded the Mater Hospital, and was remembered as an anchor of the hospital by her colleagues due to her work expanding its services.

She also served as executive chairwoman of the Mater Hospital’s board of management.

Trauma centres

Two Major Trauma Centres (MTCs) at the Mater Hospital and Cork University Hospital have also been opened today. 

The two centres will provide the highest level of specialist trauma care to the most severely injured patients for the two trauma networks, the Central Trauma Network and the South Trauma Network.

“Today marks a significant milestone in the development of trauma care in Ireland. The opening of the two Major Trauma Centres in Dublin and Cork is the start of a radical change programme, reorganising trauma care into two trauma networks, improving both the quality of care and outcomes for patients with major trauma,” Minister Donnelly said. 

“Evidence continues to show that receiving the right care, at the right time, in the right place significantly reduces the risk of severe disability and death for patients with severe trauma. Evidence shows that severely injured patients are less likely to die if admitted to a Major Trauma Centre than if admitted to other hospitals,” he said. 

The MTC at the Mater will now begin to support a network of hospitals across the Central Trauma Network, accepting the transfer of severely injured patients from other networked hospitals.

It is forecast that an additional 1,500 patients will be managed by the MTC at the Mater once the trauma system is fully operational.

Similarly, the MTC at Cork University Hospital will support trauma across the South Trauma Network and is forecast that an additional 380 trauma patients will be managed at CUH once the trauma system is fully established.

HSE chief executive Bernard Gloster said: “We know from experience that major centres and networks of specialty lead to significantly more effective care and treatment. In the case of trauma care this step today is a major component of the overall strategy.

“The networks supported by the major centres will greatly improve their ability to respond to people who need trauma care, leading to the best possible outcomes.”

With reporting by Hayley Halpin

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