Ó Domhnaill calls on Health Minister to save Lifford Hospital

Donegal Senator Brian ÓDomhnaill has called on the Minister for Health James Reilly to keep Lifford Hospital in Co Donegal open. 

Senator Ó Domhnaill raised the issue on Matters of Adjournment in the Seanad this evening (Thursday, 12 January 2012) amid the ongoing fears that the community hospital will soon be shut down.  He appealed for a commitment that Lifford Community Hospital will be kept open and called for clarity on the Government’s plans to shut down community hospitals and nursing home units this year.

Speaking afterwards Senator Ó Domhnaill said: “Lifford Community Hospital is a crucial part of the health services in Donegal. It is an excellent facility that has served the needs of the community for centuries. Shutting it down would have an enormous impact on the community and healthcare provision in the region.

 “Lifford Hospital was established in 1799 and currently has 20 beds, 11 of which are for long-term residents. The remainder provide convalescent, step down and intermediate care for patients discharged from Letterkenny General Hospital. A HIQA report has found that the facility is operating effectively and providing excellent care levels to patients. 

““I questioned Junior Health Minister Kathleen Lynch about the increasing concern about her Government’s agenda in shutting down community hospitals and closing nursing home units in smaller communities. This poses a further threat to the future of Lifford Hospital.  The Minister’s response was extremely disappointing. She admitted that her Government plans to shut down community hospitals and nursing homes, citing the need to achieve “efficiencies”.  She refused to give any commitment to Lifford Hospital or any other facilities under threat of closure.

“I have again appealed to Minister Lynch and the Health Minister James Reilly to see sense and keep Lifford Hospital open. Closing it will have a serious impact on patients in the region – far greater than any savings that will be achieved.”

Posted: Jan 12, 2012     |     Categories: Uncategorized