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Three elective hospitals to be developed in Cork, Galway and Dublin to help tackle waiting lists

It is estimated that they will cater for up to 940,000 planned procedures and operations every year.

Image: Shutterstock

THREE NEW ELECTIVE hospitals are to be developed as part of a new Sláintecare strategy to address outpatient procedures and surgical waiting lists.

The hospitals, which will be located in Cork, Galway and Dublin, will be built as part of the National Elective Ambulatory Care Strategy, which was approved by Cabinet today.

It is estimated that they will provide coverage for 60-70% of the overall population, catering for up to 940,000 planned procedures and operations every year. 

This includes around 215,000 day case surgery and minor operation procedures, around 115,000 endoscopy procedures, over 400,000 outpatient diagnostics and treatments, and almost 200,000 outpatient consultations.

Day procedures offered in the first phase will include gastrointestinal, gynaecology, opthalmology, and orthopaedics.

The Department of Health said the elective hospitals will provide additional capacity and help address waiting lists, while being as flexible and adaptable as possible to facilitate a future phase, which would include some elective in-patient treatment.

In a statement, Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly said: “The development of these three elective hospitals will provide a sustainable and strategic response to cater for the evolving healthcare needs, treatments, and practice for care of patients – delivering the right care, in the right place at the right time.”

The department said the development of the hospitals, as referenced in National Development Plan 2021 – 2030, will require “significant infrastructural investment”.

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It said the Elective Hospitals Oversight Group, under the joint governance of the department, the HSE and Sláintecare, would guide the development of the hospital proposals.

“The Oversight Group is following the process outlined in the updated Public Spending Code, setting out the value for money requirements for the evaluation, planning, and management of large public investment projects,” it said.

“Preliminary Business Cases for each Elective hospitals are at an advanced stage of development and are expected to be submitted to the Department of Health in early 2022.”

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Jane Moore

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