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Wednesday 13 December 2017

TD criticises bed shortage at unit

Michael Brennan Deputy Political Editor

A Fine Gael TD who has a daughter with cystic fibrosis (CF) has criticised the shortage of dedicated hospital beds for those with the life-long condition.

Aine Collins (pictured) was speaking after it emerged that CF patients were unable to get beds in a specially built ward in St Vincent's Hospital in Dublin. It had been designed so that they would be isolated from other patients to prevent the high risk of cross-infection.

Ms Collins said the subject was close to her heart because her daughter Lily (4) has the condition. She criticised the fact that some of the 34 dedicated beds had not been available for CF patients who needed them recently.

"I do not understand the reason the special delivery unit in the Health Service Executive could not have allocated the beds to be isolated for this time of year when we know that infection is at its highest," she said. The Cork North West TD has previously described how the lack of isolated units and the fear that her daughter would pick up infections in Cork University Hospital were the reasons she decided to run for the Dail to change the situation.

Ms Collins said that of the 34 CF beds in St Vincent's, 20 were supposed to be dedicated full time to CF patients and the remaining 14 were supposed to be made available when needed. "It's just heart breaking to think they worked so hard to get it built and the people who need the beds don't have them," she said. Ms Collins is involved in the campaign to get an 11-bed isolation unit for adult CF patients and a new unit for children with CF in Cork University Hospital.

Irish Independent

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