Double dose of good news for Waterford Cath Lab
The Department of Health has outlined the timelines for the completion of refurbishment works to the existing Cath lab at University Hospital Waterford and the publication of the tender for the second permanent Cath Lab.
In correspondence sent to Senator John Cummins in response to questions he submitted, a representative for Minister Simon Harris firstly pointed to delays arising out of Covid-19 before confirming that work was well underway in respect of the second permanent Cath Lab project at UHW.
“The Estates Unit in the Health Service Executive has been tasked with the delivery of additional capacity (infrastructure and equipment) nationwide in the effort to contain and prevent the spread of Covid-19. This has resulted in delays to works and schedules.
"However as outlined previously funding has been allocated in the Capital Plan for the provision of a second Cath Lab at University Hospital Waterford. Planning permission is in place for this project and applications for fire and disability certification are currently in progress.
"Preparation of contract documentation has commenced; contractor selection is underway and it is anticipated the project will go to tender before late July,"
Senator Cummins said “This is hugely welcome news, it is something that I have been pursuing strongly since my election to Seanad Eireann. I have raised it at every available opportunity with Minister Harris and the Taoiseach and while I acknowledge the works the Estates Office in the HSE have been doing around Covid-19, now is the time to recommence work on critical non-covid capital projects like the second Cath Lab at UHW.
"I am reassured from the response I’ve received that work is well underway in relation to the preparation of contract documentation and contractor selection with a view to the tender issuing before late July."
The correspondence also gave an update in relation to the refurbishment works on the existing Cath Lab at UHW.
“Building works have already been completed in respect of the refurbishment of the existing Cath Lab at University Hospital Waterford, they are awaiting the installation and commissioning of equipment as part of the Equipment Replacement Programme. It is expected the equipment supplier will be on site in mid-June to complete these works and estimated the equipment will be commissioned by late July."
Senator Cummins said: “I understand there may be some issues with the delivery of parts associated with the Cath Lab due to supply chain issues associated with Covid-19; however I am still hopeful that the timeline for the installation and commissioning of the Cath Lab equipment can be expedited”.
He concluded by saying “Once complete and operations are transferred back to UHW from UPMC, we will have two state of the art Cath lab facilities in Waterford – one at UHW & the other at UPMC. It is my belief that a service level agreement should be reached between the HSE and UPMC in relation to the provision of diagnostics for Cardiac patients across the South East that will more than match what was being provided by the mobile lab at UHW which only operated three days a week. It is my view this would fill the gap while the second permanent lab is being constructed at UHW."