A tender seeking contractors to undertake the work was recently launched by the HSE, outlining details of the plan.
The centre, which will cater for paediatric and adult diabetes patients, will help to improve services to patients amid ongoing concern among campaigners about the lack of diabetes services in the north-west region and lengthy waiting lists for care.
“The new building will be a 285 square metre single storey stand-alone structure of traditional build that will meet the needs of the paediatric and adult diabetes services in Sligo. The building will be located adjacent to the existing Orthodontics Department/Dental Surgery on the top of the hill to the north-east of the main hospital building,” the tender notice outlined.
A start date for works has yet to be confirmed, but the applications process closed last week. The work will take nine months to complete.
Meanwhile, Diabetes Ireland has expressed disappointment that a post for a paediatric consultant with a special interest in diabetes at SUH, vacant since April and recently advertised by the HSE, includes a requirement to work just 22 hours per month.
“This is not in keeping with the recommendations of the HSE approved National Model of Care for Paediatric Healthcare Services in Ireland or in keeping with the <em>Sláinte[care </em>report]… and the prevention of the very serious complications for children and adolescents with diabetes. This post should allow 2.5 days per week allocated to the care of children and adolescents requiring diabetes/endocrinology support,” a statement from the charity noted.
“Diabetes Ireland is baffled as to why no paediatric endocrinologist, which is necessary for a diabetes centre of excellence, had been applied for by the Saolta Group given that there is a strategy to develop full diabetes centres of excellence in Sligo and Galway.”