Dáil Éireann - Volume 393 - 15 November, 1989

Written Answers. - St. Vincent's Hospital, Tipperary.

48. Mr. Ferris asked the Minister for Health if his attention has been drawn to the need for the restoration of an ambulance station in Tipperary town which [539] was discontinued at the time of closure of St. Vincent's District Hospital; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

69. Mr. Ferris asked the Minister for Health when it is proposed to reopen St. Vincent's Hospital, Tipperary town as a sub acute hospital; and if the ambulance station attached to St. Vincent's will be restored.

Minister for Health (Dr. O'Hanlon): I propose to take Questions Nos. 48 and 49 together.

The South-Eastern Health Board are responsible for the provision of health services in south Tipperary. I understand that the board have no proposal to reopen St. Vincent's as an inpatient facility. The buildings which previously accommodated the district hospital have been adapted for use as a health centre and day care centres for the mentally ill and the elderly. Indeed, I provided £40,000 from national lottery funding in 1988 to enable the renovations necessary to be carried out. The new facility opened in April of this year and has greatly strengthened community care services in the area.

Ambulance transport in the Tipperary area is also a matter for the South-Eastern Health Board. The board have no plans to reopen the ambulance station at St. Vincent's Hospital, and the service to Tipperary town will continue to be provided from Our Lady's County Surgical Hospital, Cashel.

The board continually monitor the position with regard to the overall demand for ambulance services. They are satisfied that the arrangements which are in place are adequate to cope with the pattern of demand which prevails in the south-west Tipperary area.