A PROPOSAL to rename the Mid-Western Regional Hospital Dooradoyle - to reflect its status as a teaching hospital - is understood to have been approved by HSE top brass.
The Regional will now be known as University Hospital Limerick from the autumn. And it is hoped the rebranding will help in attracting top medical professionals to the Mid-West.
Speaking to the Limerick Chronicle earlier this year, HSE area manager Bernard Gloster said: “we are now at the stage where we are hoping to finalise this year the renaming of our hospitals as university hospitals because of the new medical school at the university. And that is something that will help us in attracting staff and attracting research.”
Head of the Graduate Medical School at the University of Limerick, Prof Paul Finucane, said this week; “it is my understanding that the proposal was approved by the board of the HSE during the summer and the hospital will be rebadged in the autumn although I hasten to add it is something the HSE was primarily involved in doing rather than UL”.
But the proposal sat well with the activities of the medical school.
“As the number of students we take in increases, the number of them in Dooradoyle at any given time starts to increase,” Prof Finucane said.
At any one time around a quarter of UL medical students were working in GP practices around the country and three quarters in hospitals, of whom roughly half were based in Dooradoyle, he explained.
UL was working in tandem with the HSE in transforming the Dooradoyle campus.
“I don’t think I’m saying anything a lot of people would disagree with when I say the fabric of the hospital in Dooradoyle is quite poor as there hasn’t been much investment in recent decades. Certainly if you compare it with hospitals like the Midland Regional Hospital in Tullamore, a fantastic facility, Dooradoyle looks pretty shabby.”
But the new critical care block - as well as the clinical education and research facility being co-developed by UL and the HSE - were among the improvements on the cards for Dooradoyle.
“Certainly if UL can be a catalyst for improving the fabric of the hospital, that can only be of benefit for all the people of the Mid-West,” Prof Finucane said.