Pharmacy has interim examiner appointed

An interim examiner has been appointed to a pharmacy operating out of a flagship primary care centre opened by entrepreneur Fergus Hoban.

The Touchstone pharmacy at Blackrock Hall, which opened in 2010, was placed in interim examinership in the last fortnight, according to Kieran Coughlan, who, with wife Claire Riordan, is landlord and owner of the building.

In addition, Blackrock Hall Allied Medical Services, which operates out of a section of the second floor, has ceased to trade and is going into liquidation. Ciaran Desmond, solicitor for Mr Hoban, confirmed a creditors’ meeting is set to for November 21.

Mr Coughlan, who says he is owed €280,000 in rent relating to the pharmacy and the second-floor services, said despite the setbacks, it was “business as usual” at the Mahon centre.

Mr Coughlan said the health professionals working on the second floor were continuing to run their services and planned to do so into the future “in their own right” rather than under the banner of Blackrock Hall Allied Medical Services.

Mr Coughlan said while he was grateful to Mr Hoban for bringing business to his premises, he was “disappointed with the way things have panned out”.

Speaking from the US last night, Mr Hoban said the pharmacy should emerge from examinership successfully within the next few weeks. He said the large medical practice and pharmacy should continue their success for several years.

Blackrock Hall was the first in what was originally planned by Mr Hoban as a nationwide network of 60 state-of-the-art primary care centres providing a range of services. However, his ambitious plans stalled with the property crash. He subsequently shifted his focus to the US where he is currently involved with health insurance giant Blue Cross Blue Shield.

When the Irish Examiner contacted Blue Cross chief executive Steve Martin yesterday, he said he was “unaware” of any issues in relation to Mr Hoban’s Irish interests.


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