No funds in place for hospital to overhaul theatres

A major acute hospital in Cork has a plan but no funding to improve operating theatres identified as not being fit for purpose by the Health Information and Quality Authority (Hiqa).

Hiqa said “substantive issues and risks” identified in its 2015 report relating to the infrastructure of four theatres at the South Infirmary Victoria University Hospital remained outstanding.

Inspectors who made an unannounced visit to the voluntary hospital in April found that some improvements were made to maintenance and infrastructure. However, substantive issues and risks identified in the 2015 report remained outstanding.

Hiqa previously found that the four theatres did not comply with international standards and design specifications needed for a safe surgical environment.

The hospital has been selected as a site for elective surgery in the new South/South-West Hospitals Group.

Hiqa said it was crucial the hospital was resourced to implement the necessary measures to ensure all of its operating theatres comply with modern standards and design specifications.

The inspectors found there was no funded plans or agreed timelines to address the issued identified.

Responding yesterday, the hospital said a feasibility study outlining options for the reconfiguration of the theatre department had been submitted to the South-South-West Hospital Group.

The hospital was also criticised for not having mechanisms in place so deficits in the theatre department did not negatively affect patients from an infection prevention and control perspective.

The hospital said there were measures to reduce the risk of infection to all patients, including same-day surgery, pre-operative assessment and screening patients for Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).


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