Visits by Minister for Public Expenditure Brendan Howlin last week and the forthcoming visit by Minister for Health Leo Varadkar this week must deliver a new Emergency Department (ED ) for Galway, Labour deputy Derek Nolan says.
Deputy Nolan says he is glad to have had the opportunity to invite Minster Howlin to University Hospital Galway (UHG ) to meet with and talk to hospital representatives there and that the Minister had heard first-hand about the limitations of the building and how patients’ safety, privacy and dignity are often compromised.
“Minister Howlin is due to announce a new capital funding plan in the autumn. His understanding of the current situation and his support for the project is critical to its realisation.
"As well as this, I am delighted to hear that the Minister for Health is due to visit the hospital in the next week. He will also be able to witness the serious challenges that the staff and patients face on a daily basis," he said.
“While these visits are absolutely vital, they must have a tangible outcome and that is what I impressed on Minister Howlin. A new ED is what is needed and is what must be the overall target.“The Minister himself has stated to me in the Dáil that the current building is not fit for purpose and a new building has to be the medium to long term solution.
"I am looking forward to his visit so that he can finally see the reality of the situation.“Getting a new ED is a priority for me and, more importantly, a priority for the people of Galway. A good standard of healthcare is the fundamental basis of any society and investing in infrastructure is a key component of that," he concluded.