The Midlands Regional Hospital Tullamore (MRHT) has received €84.4 million in funding for 2016. Details of the allocation were included in the Dublin Midlands Hospital Group (DMHG) Operational Plan which was published last week.
By Damian Moran
The 2016 budget projects that MRHT will treat 11,000 inpatients and over 33,000 day care patients, in addition to patients expected to attend the emergency department. The plan also prioritises the delivery of a replacement MRI unit and additional ultrasound capacity at MRHT. An overall budgetary allocation of €2.57 million has been set aside to deliver these additional facilities. As one of the Group’s seven hospitals, MHRT’s funding has devolved to the Group for the first time, tailoring patient services to the local needs in Tullamore.
The plan points out that there are a number of challenges in delivering services to patients this year across its seven hospitals. These include an increased demand for acute hospital services; a growing and ageing population; pressures on emergency departments; the requirement to reduce agency staff and overtime costs; and the difficulty in hiring and retaining staff.
However, MHRT and the other six Group hospitals are undertaking a number of reforms to ensure that patient care and service efficiencies are enhanced. These include the development of integrated care programmes, which ensure that care is delivered in the most appropriate and cost-effective way and involves people at every level of the health services working together.
Dr Susan O’Reilly, CEO of the Dublin Midlands Hospital Group (DMHG), said:
‘Today’s publication of the DMHG’s Operational Plan is a significant milestone for MRHT and the other Group hospitals. For the first time, the DMHG has responsibility for funding hospital services in Tullamore, ensuring the services and budget provided better meet the patient needs and are tailored, in so far as possible, to local issues.
‘There are certainly challenges to operating within the allocation that we need to tackle, in particular, the impact of an ageing population and increasing demand for services. DMHG and MRHT will now work together to deliver optimum services for our patients in Tullamore, within the resources available but at the same time ensuring that quality and patient safety remains a key priority at all times. In 2016, investment in services and new facilities such as the MRI unit and additional ultrasound capacity will help in achieving this goal’, added Dr. O’Reilly.