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No timeline given for new Emergency Department


LONG TERM PROJECT It will be years rather than months before there is a new Emergency Department at Mayo University Hospital.

Meeting hears it will be ‘a few years’ before facility is operational

Anton McNulty

A CASTLEBAR councillor has criticised the lack of a clear timeline for the proposed new Emergency Department at Mayo University Hospital.
A design team within the HSE is currently aiming to complete a preliminary design of the new ED.
Speaking at the HSE Regional Health Forum West meeting, Independent Castlebar councillor Michael Kilcoyne demanded to know when the ED would be operational.
“I asked when do you intend to apply for planning, and I am told planning application is anticipated in due course when the scheme is sufficiently advanced. What kind of a date would that be?” he asked.
Ann Cosgrove, the Chief Operations Officer with the Saolta University Health Care Group, which includes Mayo University Hospital, told Cllr Kilcoyne that Saolta cannot give any accurate timeline, but indicated that such a timeline should be available once the current design phase is complete.
“The preliminary design will be a high-level design which should be available in August and following on from that there is detailed design process, which involves your mechanical and electrical and the finer detail of all aspects of construction.
“It takes a few months for the design team working on a project to be able to give a reasonable prediction of timelines, including the timeline for a planning application and also for construction. In reality it will be a few years before this is actually available and operational.”
Ms Cosgrove continued: “We will get a timeline from the design team when they can give us a reasonably accurate timeline. It is pointless of us guesstimating what it will be … I would expect by the end of August when we have an outline design we should be able to get a reasonably accurate timeframe for all of the steps in relation to this project.”

The HSE also informed Cllr Kilcoyne that the project is included in the HSE Capital Plan and that sufficient funding is available in 2022 to meet the anticipated cash flow requirements.
It was also explained that the project experienced delays when the design team were temporarily diverted to progress the scheme for the CT-replacement project.
Ms Cosgrove also confirmed to Cllr Kilcoyne that no funding has been approved for the project apart from the funding for the design process.
“We have been funded for the first part of the project, which is the design of the building and the planning application. When you get to that stage there are reports which have to be completed by the technical teams and then submitted nationally for the next phase. There is the commitment in the capital plan for the ED but funding comes as required,” she concluded.