Fianna Fáil Senator Denis O’Donovan has expressed his grave concerns for the future of Bandon Community Hospital after the Government failed to guarantee its existence beyond the next three years.
Senator O’Donovan raised the issue in the Seanad this week and called on the Government to do all it can to ensure the hospital, that serves over 33,000 people, survives in the long-term.
“Bandon Community Hospital has been in existence for over 80 years and has served the community of Bandon and its surrounds since,” said Senator O’Donovan.
“It currently caters for 22 elderly people and such has been demand for the services at the hospital that it has undergone a series of renovations and extensions. Almost €400,000 has been spent on refurbishments at the hospital in the last 5 years.
“A new extension for the hospital was sanctioned in 2006 but with the downturn in the economy this was delayed. Planning permission for the project has been granted and funding is the last remaining obstacle. If this finance is not forthcoming soon, the future viability of the hospital will be put in severe doubt. The hospital has only been cleared to meet minimum safety standards for the next 3 years but after that the future looks bleak.
“There is a very strong case for upgrading the hospital and I am calling on Cork Minister Kathleen Lynch to do all she can to secure this vital funding. HIQA inspections have already indicated that the hospital facilities are not adequate for the service it provides and with the demand as high as ever for places at the hospital it is vital this is dealt with swiftly.
“I am deeply concerned about the future of Bandon Community Hospital and I am urging Minister Lynch do secure funding to upgrade the hospital to secure its future.”