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Board of the Galway and Roscommon University Hospitals Group meets in Portiuncula Hospital Ballinasloe

The Board of the Galway and Roscommon University Hospitals Group met in Portiuncula Hospital Ballinasloe yesterday, Tuesday 21 May. This was the fourth meeting of the full Board since the non-Executive Directors of the Board were appointed in January and the first meeting since the Minister for Health announced the expansion of the Group to include Mayo, Letterkenny and Sligo last week.
Mr Noel Daly, chairman of the Board of the Group, stated, “Last week was another milestone in the development of hospital groups and in particular for the newly expanded hospital group for the West / North West. It is the intention of the Board and the management team of the Group to become the first hospital trust in the country.
“We have had a head start with part of the Group already up and running for over a year now. The remit of the Board is to develop effective corporate and clinical governance structures along with quality and safety systems of care for patients. Much of the groundwork for this has been completed which will make it easier to integrate all the hospitals into a common governance arrangement and put structures in place to bring the seven hospitals to the next level of performance and accountability.
“Minister Reilly has described the formation of the new hospital groups as the most fundamental reform of the Irish acute hospital system in decades. The Group now has more autonomy to manage resources, both funding and staffing, in a way that is appropriate to the needs of our patients.
“In addition, the Minister laid out the road map for the development of the hospital groups, leading to the establishment of hospital trusts on a statutory basis in 2015. The Department of Health will put in place an overarching policy framework to guide the reorganisation of hospital services from a national standpoint and the roll-out of the hospital groups will be overseen by a National Strategic Advisory Group.
“Each hospital group must develop a strategic plan for their future service configuration and these plans must describe how each group will provide more efficient and effective patient services to the respective populations.
“We have started developing our strategic plan which will outline how we will play to the strengths of each of the hospitals in the Group so that each hospital will develop services of which their locality will be proud and which meet the needs of their patients. The group will work to national standards of quality and care which set out to ensure that the quality of care is consistent across all hospitals in the country. In addition we have put together a steering group to develop our integration plans and prepare for our transition to a trust. We will also be naming the new Group to encapsulate all of the member hospitals.
“Today’s visit to Portiuncula was an opportunity for the Board members to see first-hand how the hospital plays an essential role as part of a Group of hospitals. We have already had a Board meeting in Roscommon Hospital and I look forward to future meetings in Castlebar, Letterkenny and Sligo which will be scheduled for later this year.
“Our next Board meeting will take place in Galway on 18 June. This will be the first of our two annual public Board meetings and a timely opportunity for members of the public to attend.”
Photo Details:
The Board of the Galway and Roscommon University Hospitals Group met at Portiuncula Hospital Ballinasloe (PHB) on Tuesday 21 May. Standing from left: Máire Kelly, Clinical Support Services Director, PHB; Denis Minton, Director of Resources and Finance, PHB; Dr Michael Brassil, Clinical Director, Portiuncula; Ray Mitchell, HSE Assistant National Director; Maurice Power, Group Chief Financial Officer; Fiona McHugh, Head of Corporate Development; Dr John Killeen, non-Executive Director; Dr Jim Browne, non-Executive Director; Dr Pat Nash, Group Clinical Director; and Marita Fogarty, A/Director of Nursing and Midwifery, PHB. Seated from left: Phyllis MacNamara, non-Executive Director; Colette Cowan, Group Director of Nursing and Midwifery; Noel Daly, Chair of the Board; Bill Maher, CEO of the Group; Chris Kane, A/General Manager, PHB; and Tony Canavan, Group Chief Operating Officer.