Speech by Mr. Micheál Martin T.D., Minister for Health and Children at the official opening of the New Day Ward and Casualty Department, The Children´s Hospital, Temple Street

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am delighted to be here today at the Children´s Hospital, Temple Street to officially open the new Day Ward and Casualty Department. The Children´s Hospital has been to the fore in providing quality care for children from all over the country for over 100 years. The Congregations of the Sisters of Charity, and more recently, the Sisters of Mercy, together with the dedicated and skilled staff at the hospital are to be commended for their contribution to the provision of health services to children. The provision of a new casualty department and the extension of the day service will allow for the provision of valuable additional services to the hospital’s paediatric catchment population.

The development of the two units has been approved and funded by my Department at a cost of £2.7million and will require revenue funding of £500,000 per annum to meet running costs.

I understand that the New Day Ward, which is to be called St Philomena´s, has 18 beds plus a minor procedures room. I know that the hospital is anticipating a further increase in admissions with improved facilities and a stronger emphasis on medical day care. The new Accident and Emergency Department includes a three bay resuscitation room, a seven-bed observation ward and a five bay treatment room, a minor procedures room, suturing room and parents room.

I am confident that the development will help alleviate some of the difficulties associated with an increasing catchment population.

The colourful garden and artwork throughout is the work of The Ark Cultural Trust for Children. The courtyard and interior decorations were developed by The Ark and sponsored by Aer Lingus. I would like to extend my appreciation to The Ark, their sponsors and the artists involved. Special mention should also be made of the children of the Mates Project and the numerous children in the Hospital itself who gave their time and effort to produce the wonderful artwork we see her today.

I am sure you are all aware that plans are in train to relocate the hospital to the Mater Hospital Campus and a number of steering groups are in place to plan for the development of facilities on the new site. The new hospital will be the largest in the State and will be in a position to deliver quality care in a modern infrastructure to the catchment area of north Dublin and the wider community.

In the interim my Department, the Eastern Regional Health Authority and the hospital are committed to ensuring that the demands of an ever increasing paediatric population are met at Temple Street. In this regard various projects are in train including:

  • Refurbishment of the Casualty Lane
  • Extending the Laboratory
  • Extending the Outpatient Department
  • Extending St. Francis Clinic
  • Upgrading Central Sterile Supply Department and Formula Room
  • Refurbishment of Canteen and Dining Area
  • Upgrading the Laundry

Finally, I would like to thank the Children´s Hospital for inviting me to officially open this new development. The opening of these two units reflects the commitment of the Hospital, the Eastern Regional Health Authority and my Department to improving standards of care and facilities available for all children who attend the hospital.

Thank you