Limerick’s Regional Hospital is €14m over budget

David Hurley

Reporter:

David Hurley

CONCERNS have been expressed that services may have to be curtailed at the Mid Western Regional Hospital in Dooradoyle later in the year after new figures showed it is operating at more than €14m over its budget for the year.

CONCERNS have been expressed that services may have to be curtailed at the Mid Western Regional Hospital in Dooradoyle later in the year after new figures showed it is operating at more than €14m over its budget for the year.

According to the latest monthly performance report for May, the HSE says a total of €69.1m was spent at the hospital between January and May compared to a budget of €54.79m.

This represents an overrun of more than 26 per cent.

The report shows 5,554 people presented at the hospital’s Accident and Emergency department during May and that 1,686 people were admitted.

A total of 8,741 people were admitted to A&E during the first five months of the year which represent an increase of 14.1 per cent compared to the same period last year.

The monthly performance report also shows that waiting times for elective surgeries at the Mid Western Regional Hospital was more than three years at the end of May for adults and ten months for children.

According to the HSE Other hospitals in Limerick were also over budget at the end of May.

The Regional Maternity Hospital, which saw an increase in births during May, was 28.6 per cent over budget for the first five months of the year.

Croom Orthopaedic Hospital was operating 56.02 per cent above budget at the end of May and St John’s Hospital was 2.07 per cent over budget.

In contrast to the performance of hospitals across Limerick the cost of providing ambulance services across the Mid West is ahead of expectations.

The cost of the service for the first five months of the year was €5.38m - 4 per cent below budget.

The Irish Patients’ Association has expressed deep concern about the implications for the health service of overspending by the Health Service Executive.

Stephen McMahon, Chairman of the IPA, said if hospitals run out of cash, they will be unable to pay staff, suppliers and, of crucial importance, will cease treating patients.

It has called on the HSE to conduct patient impact statements for the hospitals affected, to minimise the impact on patient care.

Nationally, the HSE overspent its budget by €170m Between January and May.