Fianna Fáil TD for Laois Sean Fleming has called on the Minister for Health Leo Varadkar and the HSE to take action resolve the outstanding issues St. Vincent’s Hospital Mountmellick. The facility must be supported with the view to restarting admissions without delay.
Deputy Fleming raised the matter in the Dáil directly with the Minister for Health Leo Varadkar.
“In recent weeks I received information from a lady whose elderly mother was due to be admitted to St. Vincent’s Hospital in Mountmellick for respite care. The lady was told at short notice that her mother could not be admitted as they were not in a position to accept any new patients,” said Deputy Fleming.
“It quickly became clear to the lady that there was nowhere for her mother to go to receive respite care. This situation has been repeated for a number of people looking to be admitted to the hospital in recent weeks.
“HIQA has issued a report saying the facility needs to be brought up to standard as there is a lack of dignity for patients in the hospital. I understand this is the main reason why the hospital is not in a position to accept new patients. However it’s unacceptable that people in the local community are left without what is a vital healthcare service.
“This saga is undermining public confidence in the hospital. It is also leading to serious knock on delays and disruptions at other healthcare facilities in the region. The fact that Mountmellick has been closed for admissions in recent times is causing difficulties at the hospital in Portlaoise due to delayed discharges.
“I was disappointed that the Minister showed no urgency in dealing with this matter nor did he give any timescale or commitment when it will be dealt with. The Minister said that the HSE will submit a plan for all hospitals in the country to HIQA in the coming weeks. I demanded that the Minister publish this plan to see what’s involved. Again the Minister refused to confirm whether or not this taxpayer funded plan will even be published.”