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Future Of Listowel Community Hospital. 10.11.11

PRESS RELEASE, Thursday, November 10th, 2011

INMO Calls On The HSE South To Set Out Their Intent Regarding The Future Of Listowel Community Hospital

The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) has today called upon the HSE South to declare their intent regarding the future of Listowel Community Hospital.  At a meeting last Tuesday HSE officials advised the INMO that the bed complement within the hospital was to reduce from 53 to 44.  Subsequent to this, when nurse management analysed the availability of nursing staff for 2012 they were advised that the available nursing staff would lead to a situation whereby the hospital could only cater for 32 beds.  It is apparent that the moratorium on staff recruitment is now leading to a direct reduction in services to patients within Listowel.
The retirement of 16 nurses to date over recent years, with a loss of 19 nurses in total through retirement by the end of this year, would appear to be used by the HSE as a means of reducing services by stealth. 
Speaking today INMO Industrial Relations Officer, Michael Dineen said:
“At our meeting on Tuesday last we were alarmed by the fact that Senior Management were reluctant to commit to a definitive number of beds within Listowel Community Hospital.  We expressed our concern at the time that, in aligning the moratorium and availability of nurses to the numbers of beds within any facility, would inevitably lead to a situation whereby the very viability of that hospital would come into question.
It is apparent that our concerns of Tuesday last were well founded in that the position put to nurse management with regard to the future bed capacity of 32 beds does call into question the future existence of the hospital itself.  The moratorium should never be used as a vehicle for closing care facilities and the INMO now calls on the HSE South to commit to the maintenance of a sustainable number of beds within Listowel Community Hospital through the provision of adequate nursing numbers.”
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Irish Nurses & Midwives Organisation (Cumann Altrai agus Ban Cabhrach na hEireann). The Whitworth Building, North Brunswick Street, Dublin 7. T:+353 1 664 0600 E:inmo@inmo.ie