HSE

  • Almost six and a half thousand older people across the country are currently on a waiting list for home care support from the HSE.

    The biggest waiting list in the CHO2, which comprises Mayo, Galway and Roscommon with 1,482 people waiting for home support hours.

    The figures, obtained by Fianna Fail, show that between January and March, the HSE missed its target of home support hours by around 40,000 hours - or almost 10%.

    Mayo Fianna Fail TD Lisa Chambers is asking why those targets are being missed- particularly in the Western counties, where older people are waiting for basic supports in order to continue living at home.

  •  Almost 5 million euro has been spent on ambulances to Mayo University Hospital over the past seven years, and according to Erris based Sinn Fein Senator Rose Conway Walsh it’s too high a price to pay when the service is not under HSE control.

    The senator says the spending €4.8 million on private ambulances since 2011 does not constitute value for money and the money should instead have been spent purchasing and staffing new ambulances.

     She claims that the ambulance services in the HSE have suffered from years of cuts, under investment, and privatisation of ambulance services with over €31 million being spent on private ambulances by the HSE nationally since 2011.

    Mayo University Hospital and the State, she believes, need to ensure that we have a high quality, publicly owned stock of ambulances instead of putting money into the pockets of private companies which does not constitute fiscal prudence.

  • The Alzheimer’s Day Care Centre in Castlebar will remain a five day per week service and the transport service from other parts of the county to the centre will be retained.

    That has been confirmed this evening by the Alzheimer’s Society of Ireland to Mayo Fianna Fail Deputy Dara Calleary this evening.

    Funding shortfalls meant that there was a proposal to reduce the centre to a three day per week service and cut the transport services to it.

    However following negotiations between the HSE and the Alzheimer’s Society of Ireland, that threat has been lifted.

  • Solicitor David O'Malley joined us on the Tommy Marren Show recently to discuss the issue of candour and how the HSE is failing grieving families with legitimate claims through long drawn out legal proceedings. Listen back to this interesting and important discussion now.

     

     

  • A creche in Co Galway has been closed, following an outbreak of E-coli.

    The creche in the Dunmore area has been temporarily closed after three children were diagnosed with a serious form of gastroenteritis last week, while a further four cases have been detected this week.

    Two of the young children involved are being treated in hospital in Dublin, where it's understood they were placed on dialysis.

    The HSE says an investigation into the cause of the outbreak is continuing.

    It is understood that both staff and children at the facility have taken ill. All are being monitored and will not be allowed into other childcare centres until tests show they are completely free of infection and pose no risk to others.

     

     

  • It could be 2019 before the promised new modular orthopaedic theatres for Merlin Park Hospital in Galway will be in place. The urgently required temporary structures have been stalled due to a delay by the HSE in appointing a contractor.

    The matter was raised by the Cathaoirleach of the HSE West Forum, Headford based councillor Mary Hoade at the May meeting of the Forum.

    Councillor Hoade said that the additional theatre space was promised to be in place by October of this year, but with no contractor yet appointed and no planning permission sought for the development, its delivery within the promised time frame is unlikely.

    HSE Management confirmed that there has been a delay in appointing a contractor and as a result the October delivery date is unlikely.

    The modular theatres were proposed last September, when two orthopaedic theatres at Merlin Park were forced to closed due to structural problems. One of the two has reopened since.

    However, the waiting list for hip and knee surgeries across counties Galway, Roscommon and Mayo is increasing, with intense pressure on the one working theatre at present.

  • With HSE services in Galway, Mayo and Roscommon returning to normal, the Saolta University Health Care Group and the HSE’s Community Healthcare Organisation Area 2 have thanked  the public for its support and understanding during the recent severe weather.

    In a statement released today they say they would like to thank, most sincerely, staff who went above and beyond to continue to deliver patient care during some very challenging days.

    Many staff had to put the service needs first above their own personal and family needs during this period and for this we are very grateful.

    The group also acknowledge the support of the National Ambulance Service, the Defence Forces, the Gardaí and Civil Defence in assisting with emergency transportation of patients and staff.

    They also thank the local communities for the help and support they provided to the Saolta Group.

    Hospitals have been busy and will continue to be in the coming days, particularly the Emergency Departments.

    As they prioritise treatment and care for the sickest patients and those with life threatening illnesses, it means that patients with less serious illnesses and conditions may need to wait longer for their treatment.

    As a result of this the organisation are asking people to think about all of their care and treatment options so we can keep our ED services for the patients who need them most particularly over the next few days.

    Community services in Galway Mayo and Roscommon have been disrupted over the last five days and focus is now on restoring normal service delivery as promptly as possible starting back today, Monday 5th March.

    Most services are either now running as normal or will be fully restored very shortly.

    However, the disruption caused by the severe weather may have a knock-on effect for the week ahead.

  • Due to an on-going outbreak of norovirus in Mayo University Hospital, management is now asking for a full restriction on visiting. Arrangements will be made for family members of critically ill patients or those patients who require assistance or support of a family member; this should be arranged through the nurse on duty in the ward prior to arrival at the hospital.

    Any patient presenting to the hospital with recent symptoms of diarrhoea and/ or vomiting or had contact with others who have these symptoms MUSTnotify staff on arrival into the hospital so that contingency measures can be immediately put in place.

    The Hospital Management says it appreciates and thanks the community for their support for this patient safety measure.

  • A Galway City Councillor has expressed concerns about the high level of people presenting at the Emergency Department of Galway University Hospital with alcohol-related conditions.

    The issue was raised at this week's meeting of the HSE Regional Forum, where FG Councillor Padraig Conneely asked management for a breakdown of the figures in relation to those attending the Emergency Department - particularly at weekends and during festivals - with alcohol-related problems.

    Councillor Conneely was told those statistics are not available, but he says national and international trends would indicate that significant resources in Emergency Departments are being used to treat people who have over-indulged.

  • The HSE has apologised for failures identified in a review of paediatric audiology services in Mayo and Roscommon and has committed to sharing the review report with the families affected today.

    General Manager of the HSE West, Tony Canavan said “on behalf of the HSE, I would like to offer a sincere apology for the failures identified”.

    Parents of the children affected have been invited to meet with a senior manager and a senior audiologist to discuss the findings of the report and they will be updated on their child’s care,” he said.

    The HSE carried out a review of audiology services in counties Mayo and Roscommon between April 2011 and February 2015 following concerns raised by the assistant national clinical lead in audiology. It said the concerns related to one audiologist who no longer works in the audiology services.

    Of the 995 cases examined, 49 children have been found to be affected. Thirteen children were re-referred into the service following concerns and were retested and identified as having a hearing loss.

    Sixteen children with hearing aids received hearing aid management that deviated significantly from recommendations set out in the National Audiology Review group Report (2011). Twenty children who were recalled and retested were identified with a new hearing loss.

    The HSE say the 49 children affected are all currently receiving or have already received the appropriate care.

    Tony Canavan says the priority now is to bring the outcome of the audit to the attention of the parents involved and to provide them an opportunity to have any questions they might have answered. To this end, the review report will be shared with the families affected today.”

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    The HSE has apologised unreservedly to three women for failings in care they received while they were in foster care in Co Galway between 2005 and 2007.

    A report on last night’s Prime Time programme heard calls for  an investigation into the case of the three girls, who were abused at a foster home near Dunmore.

    The victims also said they are distraught at what they see as the lenient sentence given to their abuser.

    The women waived their right to anonymity to name their abuser as 29-year-old Keith Burke of Addergoolemore, Dunmore, Co Galway.

    Initially, he was charged with over 70 counts of rape and buggery of three young foster girls in the home he shared with them.

    This was reduced to 39 sample charges when the case came to court and the man was found guilty on 23 charges.

    Earlier this month, Keith Burke was sentenced to seven-and-a-half years in prison, with a year suspended, after he was found guilty of raping the then three foster children between 2003 and 2007.

    All three girls were under ten years of age at the time.

    Ronan Hynes - solicitor for one of the victims - has now called for the entire case to be investigated.

    In a statement last night, the HSE said that - while no apology can undo the harm inflicted on the three girls - it is important that the HSE expresses a heartfelt apology at this time.

    The HSE has been in contact with Tusla to discuss how best to determine whether this case raises any concerns for HSE-delivered services today.

    The ISPCC has commended the women involved in this case for coming forward to tell their story, and says it’s important that – when abuse happens- children are listened to and their claims acted on swiftly.

    The ISPCC says if there is any suspicion of abuse or any risk of harm to a child in foster care, it’s essential that steps are taken to protect that child and any other children in the placement.

    CEO Grainia Long also says it’s important that everyone involved in child protection can be fully confident in the foster care system, but over the past year, Tusla services have consistently failed to meet HIQA standards, and the ongoing breaches in standards of foster care must be addressed.

  • The HSE has made a € 5m settlement to the family of a boy with cerebral palsy in a case taken over the handling of his birth at Sligo General Hospital.

    The case, which was settled without an admission of liability, was taken by his mother Lisa Carpenter from Coolaney, Co. Sligo.

    Kyle Carpenter was born three weeks early on May 3rd 2009.

    His mother Lisa went to hospital two days beforehand complaining of stomach pain but she was reassured everything was normal.

    The pain continued after she went home but she experienced no pain when she woke up on May 3rd and couldn't feel any movement.

    She was advised to go back to hospital and a CTG scan taken at 1.30 gave cause for concern.

    Despite that, she claimed a decision to deliver the baby wasn't made for another hour and Kyle required resuscitation and intubation when he was eventually delivered at 3.37.

    He has since been diagnosed with cerebral palsy.

    The HSE contested liability and the case was due to go to a full hearing before it was settled out of court today with no admission of liability.

    In approving the € 5m settlement, Mr. J Kevin Cross described the case as "complex" and one, he said, that would have had an uncertain outcome for the family had it gone to a full hearing.

     

  • HSE nursing homes in Co Mayo are being paid 61% more to provide care per person than their private and voluntary counterparts, new figures published by the HSE reveal. The HSE published the fees payable to its nursing homes under the Fair Deal scheme on 23rd February, following on from a 16-month delay.  

    Private and voluntary nursing homes are required to negotiate the fees payable to them under the Fair Deal scheme with the NTPF, acting on behalf of the State. However, the fees payable to HSE nursing homes are not subject to negotiation or oversight, with the HSE being the budget-holder and payee.

    The published fees inform the average fee payable to the six HSE nursing homes in Co Mayo is €1,390 per person, per week at February 2018. The average fee payable per person to the 17 private and voluntary nursing homes operating within the county, as of 14th February 2018, is €860 per person, per week. This reveals a 61% differential in the average fees payable in respect of residents between HSE nursing homes in County Mayo and private and voluntary counterparts.

    Nationally, HSE nursing home fees are paid an average 60% above those payable in respect of residents in private and voluntary nursing homes.

  • 100 people die from smoking every week in Ireland, according to the HSE.

    It's research for World No Tobacco Day, found 1 in 4 men and 1 in 5 women still smoke.

    It's most common among young people but there are now more quitters than smokers here.

    But the HSE's Dr Paul Kavanagh says more needs to be done to encourage quitting.

  • The HSE says plans are progressing to install X-ray and ultrasound equipment at the new Tuam Primary Care Centre.

    The centre opened to the public last December, and the Department of Health allocated funding earlier this year of €700,000 for diagnostic equipment at the facility.

    The issue was raised at this month’s meeting of the HSE Regional Forum by Galway Fianna Fail Councillor Mary Hoade, who asked if the X-ray and ulstrasound services are yet available at the Tuam Primary Care Centre, and when the necessary staff would be recruited.

    Speaking with Midwest News, Councillor Hoade said she was delighted to hear that the extra services should be in place in Tuam later this year.

  • The HSE is to apologise to almost 50 families in Mayo and Roscommon for serious failings in audiology services provided to their children according to an RTE Investigates report.

    It follows the completion of a look-back review of paediatric audiology services provided in over 900 cases by one audiologist.

    The HSE carried out a view of services provided in Mayo and Roscommon from 2011 to 2015 as a result of concerns around some aspects of the quality of the service provided, leaving some children with lifelong implants.

    The report says that the individual worked in the Mayo/Roscommon area for over a ten-year period from the early 2000s providing services to young children.

    The look-back began when several professionals in the area expressed concerns about the quality of the audiologist’s work.

    Of the over 900 cases examined, 49 children have found to be affected.

    The HSE is expected to write to these families in the next number of days to provide them with details of the report and RTE reports the letters will also acknowledge that the failings identified either increased the risk of a missed diagnosis or a poor outcome for the affected children.

    The letters will also include an apology from the HSE for its failure to provide appropriate hearing assessments and for the distress this has caused the children involved and their families.

    The clinical team who undertook the review found that in the cases examined hearing assessments conducted did not meet national audiology standards.

    Among the key failures identified are a failure to determine the model of paediatric audiology service provide; hearing aid management was not performed as per relevant guidelines at fitting or review appointments; there was inadequate clinical governance in place to audit and monitor service provision and poor record keeping.

    The HSE has said that all affected children who required a recall have been offered follow-up appointments and in the majority of cases those clinical follow-ups have been accepted.

    It said any children identified as needing further interventions have now been prioritised and treated in a timely manner.

    It is understood that the individual involved has been suspended from practicing here and no longer provides services in the Republic of Ireland.

    It is reported some parents are now considering pursuing legal actions against the HSE.

     

  • One of the primary care centres in Mayo is now in private ownership, which has prompted a Ballinrobe-based councillor to raise questions about the ownership of the centres that were built with public funds.

    It’s emerged that investment firm Valley Healthcare has acquired one of the primary care centres in Mayo, but it’s not known which one.

    Valley Healthcare is now in control of four primary care centres – in Mayo, Wickow, Kerry and Cork, and are operating them under a 25-year lease from the HSE.

    The firm aims to take over up to 20 primary care centres nationally over the next 3 years.

    Councillor Damien Ryan, a member of the HSE Regional Forum, is putting down a question for the forum’s next meeting, requesting that the HSE identify the primary care centre in Co Mayo now owned by Valley Healthcare.

    Councillor Ryan says there are concerns about privatising primary care centres, which were built with public monies, and he says there’s some confusion over the ownership of these centres going forward…

  • The head of the HSE has stepped down just hours after refusing to resign over the CervicalCheck scandal.

    Tony O'Brien informed the Health Minister last night admitting that there were failures in telling women about incorrect smear test results.

    Yesterday it emerged the HSE was told two years ago that women could go to the media over the scandal.

    Mr O’Brien’s resignation has also been welcomed by Mayo Sinn Fein Senator Rose Conway-Walsh.

    She says that from the moment the revelations started about CervicalCheck, his position was untenable.

    Senator Conway-Walsh says the news yesterday that there were three memos outlining the fact that they knew within the HSE about these failures but kept that information from the women involved and their doctors, is unacceptable. 

    She told Midwest News this morning that people need to be held accountable in this scandal.

  • Mayo Fianna Fail TD Dara Calleary raised the future of the five day service at the Mayo Alzheimer’s Centre in Castlebar in the Dail last night.

    It was revealed in the past couple of weeks that Alzheimers Ireland is being forced to reduce services at the Mayo Centre in Castlebar from five days to three days and to curtail transport services to the centre from the end of this month.

    Alzheimer’s Ireland has to do this because the HSE has not increased financial support to the centre.

    Deputy Calleary says the response from the HSE to the issue last night was cold hearted in his opinion and showed no empathy for the services users and their families.

    The matter was dealt with by Minister for Older People Jim Daly and he has committed to looking at the situation himself, to see if there is anything he can do.

  • Mayo University Hospital in Castlebar, University Hospital Sligo and Galway University Hospital are  among the 13 hospitals nationally  where women were not informed of a delay in their cervical cancer diagnosis

    The HSE confirmed yesterday that 162 women – including 17 who have died ,are caught up in the latest cancer screening controversy.

    A review conducted by the HSE confirmed 208 women should have received earlier intervention than they did but only 46 individuals were made aware of this.

    The examination, conducted by national director of quality assurance at the HSE Patrick Lynch, confirmed 17 of these women have died. The cause of their deaths is not known.

    Mr Lynch said he could not state if these women were informed of the delayed diagnosis before they died but insisted their next of kin would be contacted by today at the very latest.

    All of the other women affected would also be informed by today and given an appointment with a clinician free of charge.

    HSE director-general Tony O’Brien apologised to all of the women involved and to their families for the “completely unacceptable” practices.

    This morning the government is expected to ask the health watchdog HIQA today to investigate the scandal and the way it was handled by the HSE.

    Health Minister Simon Harris will also bring forward proposals to Cabinet today to make it mandatory for doctors to have to tell patients about things that may affect them.