120 beds have been re-registered at St Joseph’s Hospital in Ennis following a landmark case taken by the HSE.
The beds will be registered again without any restriction on the admission of new residents.
Last June, the HSE appealed a decision by the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) to place restrictions on new admissions to the public elderly care facility, after the health watchdog raised concerns.
The HSE has since welcomed the outcome of a long and complex regulatory process at the care facility.
It had been decided previously by the regulator, HIQA, that the service would be restricted in being able to admit new residents but the HSE decided to appeal the decision to the courts.
Commenting on the development HSE Mid West Chief Officer Bernard Gloster said “We are very happy with the outcome and we are now asking the court to strike out the matter with no order.
“I want to thank the court and Judge Durcan for the generosity of time in considering such a complex matter.
“Thankfully at the end we arrived at agreement with no restriction on admissions. We had to make many changes and we continue to keep going with improvements in St. Joseph’s as we strive to be a person centred place of care for all who need the service.”
“No one should underestimate the work required to respond to the complexity of the situation we found ourselves in,” added Mr Gloster. “Public confidence in St. Joseph’s took a dip and we hope people will now again see St. Joseph’s as the good facility it always was playing a vital role in County Clare.”
Minister Pat Breen also welcomed the decision and paid tribute to “the management and staff of St Joseph’s, as well as local HSE management for working hard to ensure continued improvements the hospital.”
“They found themselves in a very complex situation, but fought hard to ensure that changes could be made and new admissions to the public care facility continue.
“The centre is earmarked for a major new build by 2021 under the Capital Programme and I look forward to that work beginning, so that the infrastructure reflects the care administered to the patients at St Joseph’s Hospital,” added the Clare minister of state.
Prior to the completion of major work and rebuild over the next three years, a major programme of improvements in the surroundings and the approach to care is currently ongoing at the Ennis-based care facility.
This Week’s Clare People is out now