Dublin Midlands HSE hospital group stands over strategy that includes downgrade of Portlaoise A&E

Conor Ganly

Reporter:

Conor Ganly

Portlaoise hospital hse a&e laois

Portlaoise hospital Light for Lives protest.

The Dublin Midlands Hospital Group is looking forward to launching its five-year strategic plan which includes removal of 24/7 Emergency Department services from Portlaoise hospital.

The group confirmed to the Leinster Express that the launch would not now take place in Trinity College Dublin this week. However, the DMHG insisted the plan would be launched.

"The Dublin Midlands Hospital Group has postponed the launch of its five-year strategic plan until the New Year. 

"The high-level strategy for the seven hospitals within the Group sets out a blueprint for the development of services within the Group up to 2023.

"Its focus is on developing the Group and its hospitals further, with an emphasis on improving access for patients, and further collaboration with Community Health Organisations and the academic partner, Trinity College Dublin.

 "The strategy is based on current Department of Health policies, HIQA Better Safer Healthcare Standards and HSE values and principles.

 "The Group looks forward to publishing this strategy in the New Year," said the statement.

The HSE's hospital group did not say why the launch had been postponed. It also declined to say if the hospitals that make up the Group have adopted its contents.

The statement did not repeat the claim the at strategy was not connected to the action plan for the Midlands Regional Hospital Portlaoise.

Invitations were sent out to hospital management last Friday after the Minister for Health Simon Harris met Laois TDs, Minister Charlie Flanagan, Sean Fleming and Brian Stanley.

The Minister told the TDs that he had not yet signed of on downgrade. The DMHG submitted a 160 page plan last December which sets out the removal of maternity, paediatrics , A&E, ICU and most surgery from the Laois hospital.

The DMHG is responsible for Portlaoise, St James, Tallaght, Tullamore, Naas, The Coombe, and St Lukes hospitals.