Sean Fleming TD on the march for Portlaoise hospital. Pic Denis Byrne
Laois County Coucil's draft plan is seriously deficient because it does not set out support for Portlaoise hospital as a key peice of infrastructure in the town, according to Laois TD Sean Fleming.
The Fiannal Fáil TD said the Portlaoise Draft Local Area Plan 2018-2024 contains no reference to the Midland Regional Hospital Portlaoise.
With a threat hanging over the hospital in the shape of a HSE downgrade plan, he called on the council to amend its plan.
"It is a crucially important regional facility. The plan needs to include proper policies and objectives for the Council to work with the HSE to develop and enhance this facility in Portlaoise for the years ahead.
"The Midland Regional Hospital Portlaoise is the most important key infrastructure in the town. This hospital serves not just the population of Portlaoise and Co. Laois but also a number of neighbouring counties.
"It is a strategic facility for the region and it is located in Portlaoise. The Council must have in its document a key aim to promote and support and to work with state agencies and all others to enhance this key facility in the town for the years ahead. A plan that does not include this is an objective and policy will be seriously deficient. I look forward to a proper development of this subject in the Local Area Plan.
"It is essential that Laois County Council work with and consider other State agencies in relation to the provision of key public services in the town," he said.
Dep Fleming has made the call on the council in a submission to the council. Public consultation on the plan closed in May.