CUH one of worst for third time this year

CORK University Hospital (CUH) has been named as one of the country’s worst performing public health facilities for the third time since April.

The hospital was shamed in the HSE’s latest Healthstat performance monitoring report for July.

According to the document, released in recent days, both CUH and University Hospital Galway (UHG) failed more than any other public facilities to meet set standards outlined by HSE management.

The hospitals were each given a “red light” score – the lowest in the HSE performance-monitoring system – due to concerns which are hampering the facilities.

They include:

* Unsatisfactory waiting times for operations on children.

* Emergency department trolley waits.

* Waiting times for diagnostic tests.

* Delays in organising outpatient appointments.

The figures show that at CUH the average wait for routine MRI scans and ultrasounds was more than 200 days, significantly longer than the standards set out by the HSE.

At UHG, 40% of emergency department waiting times for admission were between 12 and 24 hours, despite the HSE seeking 100% of patients to be seen within zero to six hours.

Also at UHG, the average waiting time for a public outpatient appointment in medicine and surgery was 450 days. The HSE target is for all routine referrals to be seen within 90 days.

For a surgical outpatient appointment, the average wait for UHG stood at a worrying 574 days.

According to the July statistics, the country’s best performing hospitals were Cavan General and St James’s in Dublin.

The results follow a line of recent difficulties at CUH which staff representatives have argued is linked to under-staffing and ineffective budgets.

The hospital has previously been given the “red light” rating for concerns over waiting times and whether services are patient-centred.

In July’s report, based on performance levels in April, CUH was placed in the lowest performance category due to waiting times for elective medical and surgical procedures and even for urgent colonoscopies.

It received an amber light for integration meaning “average performance, room for improvement”.

In the 12 months up to the end of April while expenditure should have been just under €86 million it rose to €91m.


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