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Coombe ‘concerned’ over decision on women’s health unit

By David Lynch - 27th Aug 2023


Significant “disappointment and concerns” were expressed at the board of the Coombe Women and Infants University Hospital in Dublin regarding lack of funding for the expansion of its women’s health unit.

At a meeting of the board in December, it was noted that the hospital was informed that funding for the expansion of the women’s health unit had not been included in the draft  HSE Capital Plan 2023.

According to the minutes, obtained by the Medical Independent (MI) following a Freedom of Information request, hospital management intended to write to the HSE “outlining its significant disappointment and concerns” with this development. It was agreed a meeting would be requested with the HSE on the matter.

A hospital spokesperson told MI that while “not specifically provided for within the 2023 HSE capital funding plan, we continue to engage with the HSE in terms of all capital requirements, including the women’s health unit, and how these might be delivered in the next five years”.

The HSE Capital Plan 2023 was published on 29 May.

Separately, the lack of available accommodation and how it is negatively impacting
on staff recruitment and retention at the Coombe has been raised at board level in recent months.

In March, during a discussion on recruitment, the meeting heard that one of the biggest challenges continued to be accommodation, “both in finding it and the cost”.

“The ongoing challenge with housing for staff is a part of the wider accommodation issue in terms of availability and cost,” the hospital’s spokesperson told MI. “We continue to explore options to identify opportunities whereby we might be able to assist staff in sourcing housing accommodation.”

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