Calls for Connolly to be base for kids’ hospital

by Ian Begley

A campaign group, who is calling on Taoiseach Enda Kenny to build the new childrens hospital at Connolly, Blanchardstown, instead of at St James’s Hospital in the city centre, is asking people to get behind them and sign their online petition.
The Connolly For Kids Hospital group believe there are many advantages of developing the new childrens hospital in Blanchardstown, such as the 145-acre site, easier access to those outside Dublin, extensive parking possibilities, and co-location with Connolly Adult Hospital and the new Rotunda Maternity Hospital. They also believe the hospital would be cheaper and faster to build at Connolly.
Speaking about their campaign, Valerin O’Shea, planning advisor for Connolly For Kids Hospital, said: “St James’s is a congested, inaccessible, inner city site. It will never be right for children and due to serious site complications we can expect significant construction delays and cost overruns.
“The Connolly for Kids Hospital campaign is asking the Government to reverse the St James’s decision and build the children’s hospital at Connolly, with urgent care units at Tallaght and at St James’s instead.
“Connolly would be cheaper to build and is likely to be a lot faster. Connolly would have a maternity location for vulnerable newborns and will offer 145 acres, unlimited parking space, opportunities for future expansion, family facilities and parkland potential.
A spokesperson from the HSE reiterated their commitment and decision to build the children’s hospital at St James’s.
“The campus at St James’s Hospital is the optimal location for the new children’s hospital. International best practice recommends colocation of paediatric services with an adult academic and research hospital, and St James’s Hospital is one of Ireland’s leading teaching hospitals, with unparalleled research credibility.
“In time, the Coombe Maternity Hospital will also be relocated to the St James’s campus. With the maternity, adult and paediatric hospital connected on a single campus, the clinical outcomes for infants, children and mothers will be significantly improved.
“The campus at St James’s Hospital is also centrally located and has more public transport links than any other hospital in the country. There will also be 1,000 parking spaces associated with the new children’s hospital. Within that, parking spaces have been provided for every occupied bed in the new children’s hospital, as well as projections of the daily requirements for the emergency department, out patients department, day cases and family parking,” said the spokesperson.
For more information about the campaign and to sign their petition, visit www.connollyforkidshospital.com.

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