Sunday 21 July 2019

Changed policy to hospital bed admissions

David Looby

A change has been made to the respite bed policy at New Ross Community Hospital, with admissions only available to residents of the New Ross district from now on.

For over 30 years New Ross Community Hospital has been offering the community short-term beds for respite, palliative, convalescence, post-operative, non-acute medical and family emergency care at fees set far below sector rates.

A hospital spokesperson said: 'No person is ever refused care due to financial constraints. This has been made possible by a dedicated staff, numerous volunteers and prudent financial management of section 39 and voluntary funding from the businesses and people of New Ross and surrounding areas.'

Some years ago, the hospital responded to a request from the Health Service Executive (HSE) for short-term respite beds. The hospital's management agreed to dedicate four respite beds to the HSE on an annual contract basis.

'It was the prerogative of the HSE administration to allocate these beds. A recent audit of these HSE respite referrals revealed that a substantial number of these beds were being allocated to residents from outside the area we were founded to serve. As a result, it was decided that in order to better meet the needs of the community in our particular catchment area and to be true to the ethos of the hospital, our respite bed allocation should be restructured and returned to local control. This measure also enabled the hospital to better meet HIQA standards on admissions.'

The hospital's board has announced that due to a further response to an identified local need, a dedicated palliative/emergency care bed is now being made available.

New Ross Standard