Cllr Padraig Conneely

  • The HSE says the Department of Health has not yet ruled out the building of a new hospital for Galway at the present overcrowded University Hospital Galway site in the city centre, despite a 150 acre site available at Merlin Park Hospital for the development.

    That position was confirmed by HSE West Management to Galway based Fine Gael councillor Padraig Conneely at a recent HSE West forum meeting.

    The councillor says he cannot believe that the deparment is even considering the city centre site for the new development, but HSE executive explained that all option continue to be explored.

  • The operators of the car-park at University Hospital Galway should be more lenient, in cases where people parked in a hurry to get a loved one into hospital and may not have money with them to pay the parking charges.

    That's according to Galway City Councillor Padraig Conneely who raised the matter at this week's HSE Regional Forum meeting in Merlin Park Hospital.

    It emerged at the meeting that revenue from car-parking charges was worth a net €1.3 million euro to Galway University Hospital in 2016.

    Councillor Conneely outlined two issues in relation to parking at the hospital - firstly he outlined the difficulties people have in getting a parking space, and secondly, he gave examples of when people may not have money with them to pay the fees, if they rushed to the hospital in an emergency situation.

    The meeting was told that concessions are available in some circumstances, but Councillor Conneely says the general public are not aware of these concessions.

  • It will be the end of this year, at the earliest, before modular operating theatres are put in place at Merlin Park Hospital in Galway to tackle the backlog of patients waiting for surgery.

    The existing orthopaedic theatre will then be closed, once the new modular theatres open.

    That's according to information provided at yesterday's meeting of the HSE West Regional Forum in Galway.

    The issue was raised again by Galway-based FG Councillor Padraig Conneely, who questioned the delay in providing the modular theatres - which were promised when two theatres at Merlin Park Hospital had to close over 18 months ago due to leaks in the roof.

    One theatre has since reopened, but two modular theatres - which were promised for orthopaedic procedures - have not yet been delivered on, after the project ran into some difficulties.

    Councillors were told at yesterday's meeting that, if planning permission is granted, the new modular theatres will be completed within 9 months.

    The planning application for the modular theatres was described as "a hames" by Councillor Conneely.

  • Progress on delivering a new emergency department at University Hospital Galway is very slow, and five years down the line from when it was first promised, planning permission has not yet been sought for the development.

    In the meantime, demand on the department is increasing with more than 5,000 patients presenting themselves at the hospital’s ED in each of the months July, August and September of this year. That’s a 4 percent increase on the same period last year.

    The matter was raised at this week’s HSE West Forum Meeting in Merlin Park by two Galway based Councillors, Headford Fianna Fail Councillor Mary Hoade, and Galway city based Fine Gael Councillor Padraig Conneely.

    Both Councillors expressed concerns that the new ED plans are not moving quickly enough.

    Cllr Hoade says she is aware of many patients who have scheduled surgery in Galway, being told the evening before admission, that due to the volume of patients in the ED that their surgery has been postponed.

    Cllr Conneely told Teresa that he cannot understand why all the groups and agencies involved in progressing the delivery of an urgently required new ED in Galway cannot come together in one room and get things sorted.


  • 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.

  • Following on from the Cervical Check controversy, it's been confirmed that 26 cases are being dealt with involving women from counties Mayo, Galway and Roscommon.

    The figure was provided at yesterday's meeting of the HSE Regional Forum in Galway, where Galway-based FG Councillor Padraig Conneely questioned HSE management on what number of cases have been settled in the West, and how many are still pending.

    He also asked for details on whether these cases are being settled out of court, and said the patients involved should have their cases settled quickly.

    Management did not provide the details Councillor Conneely requested in relation to individual cases, but did confirm that there are 26 women involved across three counties in the West.

  • The HSE West received over 2,000 requests for information last year under Freedom of Information, with half of these relating to Galway University Hospital.

    The figures were released at a recent meeting of the HSE Regional Forum, when Galway City FG Councillor Padraig Conneely asked for details on the number of FOI requests, and how long it takes to process such requests.

     Councillor Conneely says many FOI requests follow publicity about a certain health-related matter.


  • The modular orthopaedic theatres promised for Merlin Park Hospital in Galway will be further delayed by several months, according to the HSE.

    The modular theatres were proposed to deal with the backlog of orthopaedic procedures, following the closure of two surgical theatres at the hospital in 2017 due to leaking roofs.

    However, 18 months later, the temporary theatres have not been provided, and HSE management confirmed this week that they have failed to reach agreement on the terms of the contract, and have terminated their letter of intent with the provider.

    This is a further setback for the modular theatres,  according to Galway City Councillor Padraig Conneely, who had asked HSE management for an update on the current status on the proposed modular theatres for Merlin Park Hospital.

    Councillor Conneely told Midwest News that the ongoing delay in providing these modular theatres is most disappointing.