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22 May 2022

HSE moves to reassure that closure of Minor Injury Unit in Cashel's Our Lady's Hospital is only temporary

'HSE officials have given a commitment that it will reopen at the earliest opportunity'

HSE moves to reassure that closure of Minor Injury Unit in Cashel's Our Lady's Hospital is only temporary

Our Lady's Hospital in Cashel

Prior experience about the temporary closure of health facilities in Tipperary suggests that vigilance must be maintained to ensure the future of the Cashel Minor Injuries Unit, says Cashel based TD Martin Browne. 

Martin Browne said he is after receiving an assurance from the HSE that the closure of the Minor Injuries Unit in Cashel will be temporary.

Teachta Browne went on to say:

“While I am glad to have received a commitment from the HSE that the sudden closure of the Minor Injuries Unit in Cashel will be temporary, I will be taking the HSE at their word for now, but I will be monitoring the progress made in securing a replacement doctor very closely.

“HSE officials have given me a commitment that it will reopen at the earliest opportunity, but it is dependent upon the HSE overcoming the difficulties it experiences in attracting and retaining staff.

“That means that not only must the unit’s future be assured, but that the replacement of the doctor in question must happen without delay. I will be giving them a matter of weeks to resolve this.

“I also raised with them the impact not having a doctor onsite will have on other services being carried out at the unit.

“I plan to have another meeting with local HSE officials this week to further discuss the cause of the closure, the alternative arrangements that will be in place, issues with the recruitment and retention of staff, and the impacts of the closure on local health services such as the Emergency Department at Tipperary University Hospital.

“Previous experience in Co Tipperary suggests that the temporary closure of any medical unit in the community must be treated with deep scepticism, after how we saw St Brigid’s in Carrick-on-Suir was shut down.

“Commitments were also given that long-stay beds at the Dean Maxwell in Roscrea would remain, yet the Department is as committed as ever before to moving them out of the community.

“That is why the sudden closure of the Cashel Minor Injuries Unit must be taken with the utmost seriousness.

“There is an even deeper issue at heart here; and that is about conditions of work within the HSE and how those conditions are forcing many qualified healthcare workers to work elsewhere or leave the country altogether.

“The Minor Injuries Unit in Cashel must be retained at all costs, there is no room for complacency about this closure.”

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