Agreement is reached on funding of 20-bed unit at CUH by Build4Life

Work is due to get underway on the construction of a long-awaited 20-bed inpatient respiratory ward at Cork University Hospital, funded by Munster-based cystic fibrosis (CF) charity Build4Life.

Building work should have been completed last year, had the project remained on track, but a row over the ringfencing of beds for CF patients delayed the transfer of €2.3m from the charity.

Build4Life had repeatedly sought a contract to protect its investment and to guarantee CF patients access to beds, but this was resisted by hospital management.

Although the hospital had originally supported the development of 10 protected inpatient isolation rooms for CF patients, this was watered down over time to offering “priority access” — an offer Build4Life refused.

However agreement was finally been reached and four beds will now be ringfenced for CF patients and up to 10 will be made available under an emergency bed policy.

If the hospital does not provide sufficient beds to meet demand on more than two occasions, it will be required to double the number of ring-fenced beds from four to eight.

Build4Life founder Joe Browne, whose son Pádraig has CF, said he is “relieved” that construction work is to begin next Tuesday, “given agreement was reached last February”.

The charity’s €2.3m donation is the largest philanthropic donation in the hospital’s history and follows on the funds Build4Life has already donated for the development of the adult CF clinic, which opened in 2011.

Build4Life, run solely by volunteers, has also recently funded the purchase of medical equipment for the children’s CF department which will allow them to be treated in single rooms. To date, the charity has donated €2.75m to CUH.

Clancy Construction has been contracted to carry out the latest work. As well as catering for CF patients, the new ward will cater for adults with chronic respiratory illness.

More in this section

Puzzles logo

Puzzles hub

Cookie Policy Privacy Policy FAQ Help Contact Us Terms and Conditions

© Irish Examiner Ltd