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Saolta University Health Care Group and Galway University Hospitals welcomes progress on surgical hub for the West

The Saolta University Health Care Group and Galway University Hospitals welcome the progress in developing a new surgical hub in the city.

The hub, on the grounds of Merlin Park University Hospital will provide a significant uplift in surgical capacity for the region. It will reduce waiting times for day case procedures by significantly increasing the capacity for elective day case surgery in a dedicated facility.

The three storey surgical hub will consist of four operating theatres (two of which will be commissioned initially), each with scrub room, prep room, anaesthetic room, dirty utility room.

It will also provide two minor procedure rooms, a pre-assessment area, pre-op preparation area, a reception and waiting area, a recovery area and discharge lounge.

The hub will allow greater access to a range of specialities including dermatology, ENT, Ophthalmology, Oral and Maxillofacial, plastics, urology, vascular and gynaecology.

The Surgical Hub will provide regional capacity across Saolta, under the governance of University Hospital Galway surgical/perioperative directorate as the local Model 4 Hospital.

Welcoming the progress, Tony Canavan, CEO of the Saolta Group said getting the green light to progress the build was extremely significant.

“This surgical hub is a significant step forward in our plans to develop more capacity for the entire region. We have a vision for our health services which will lead to better health outcomes for our communities,” he added.

Ann Cosgrove, Chief Operations Office with Saolta added: “This surgical hub represents a vital and priority expansion of surgical facilities at a regional level. This designated standalone day case facility will enable the Saolta Group to significantly reduce its waiting lists. It will ensure that all elective care is scheduled and not impacted by emergency or acute patients from across the Saolta region.”

In granting planning permission for the hub, Galway City Council has also granted the provision of a new bus stop to be located adjacent to the proposed development along with 108 car-parking spaces which will further improve patient experience.

Construction of the Surgical Hub in Galway is due to commence later this year and is due to be operational in early 2025. A tender process has now commenced.

The development is compatible with the short, medium and long term plans for the Merlin Park site. It will also help reduce congestion on the UHG site to deal with unscheduled care activity and inpatient scheduled care.

“The surgical hub is a key enabler for the four core infrastructure needs identified by the Saolta Group for the GUH sites. However, it is only the delivery of all four components that will address the infrastructural challenges of the Model 4 Hospital for the patients of the West / North West Region.

“The progression of the new permanent ED and Women’s and Children’s block, a Cancer Centre and ward block and replacement laboratory at the UHG site and the progression of an elective hospital in Merlin Park remain key priorities,” added Mr Canavan. 

These key developments are fundamental to address the demands for GUH in providing both secondary care for the Galway catchment population and tertiary care for the entire West / North West region.

  1. The Emergency Department with Women’s & Children’s Block
  2. Laboratory Replacement facilities Development
  3. Cancer Centre and 200 bed ward block
  4. Elective Hospital on the Merlin Park site

The significant interdependencies between the above programmes mean the delivery of all components are needed to address the key infrastructural challenges of the Model 4 Hospital.

Dr Pat Nash, Chief Clinical Director for the Saolta Group said: “The Hub will improve patient experience, reduce the risk of infections and ultimately improve health outcomes for patients. It will allow the Saolta Group to significantly increase the level of day-surgery it provides and reduce length of stay for patients in line with best international practice.

“While this is an interim measure pending the construction of the new Elective Hospital in Merlin Park it is an important first step in addressing the critical infrastructure needs for our only Model 4 hospital in the West and Northwest,” he added.

GUH hospital manager Chris Kane added; “I am very pleased to announce that the full design and build construction tender for the new surgical hub on the grounds of Merlin Park University Hospital has now issued. We look forward to progressing this vital development. Pending the delivery of the elective hospital, this hub will allow us provide better and more timely care for our patients.”





The article above is specific to the following Saolta hospitals:: 
Merlin Park University Hospital (MPUH)