Work has commenced on the new 96-Bed Block at University Hospital Limerick, the next step in increasing acute bed capacity in the Mid West. Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly was present for the turning of the sod earlier today and says the project underlines the Government’s commitment to investing in modern, fit-for-purpose infrastructure to enable the delivery of high quality, safe care across our health service.
John Sisk & Son has been appointed as the main contractor and Construction will take at least two years to complete and the new facility will then have to be equipped and commissioned before opening to patients. The project represents a total capital investment of in excess of €90 million. The new 9,800 square-metre block will be built over the existing Emergency Department and Dialysis Unit and will consist of 96 en-suite single rooms over four floors. Approximately half of the beds will be new beds for inpatients while the remainder will be replacement beds allowing the hospital to close or refurbish some of the more outdated inpatient accommodation on the site giving a net increase of 48 beds. This will allow for greater compliance with best practice on infection prevention and control.
Since 2020 98 new inpatient beds and 10 new critical care beds have been delivered at UHL. This year, the hospital expects to see a record number of patients presenting to the Emergency Department. In 2021 there were 76, 473 ED attendances giving UHL an ED attendance to bed ratio of 159 based on 481 acute beds in UHL. For St James’s hospital this ratio is 69, for St Vincent’s 119, for the Mater 145 and for Galway University Hospital the ratio is 112.
During his visit to UHL, Minister Donnelly also officially opened the new 60-Bed Block developed by Western Building Systems, and the new 24-bed Ward 6B for haematology and oncology patients completed by Tipperary firm Clancy Construction.