Dáil Éireann - Volume 468 - 25 July, 1996
Written Answers. - Hospital Waiting Lists.
Mr. M. Smith Mr. M. Smith
130. Mr. M. Smith asked the Minister for Health the steps, if any, he will take to ensure that patients awaiting hip survey at Croom Orthopaedic Hospital, County Limerick are accommodated. [14958/96]
Mr. Killeen Mr. Killeen
246. Mr. Killeen asked the Minister for Health the number of patients awaiting hip replacement surgery in the Mid-Western Health Board area; and the average waiting period for such surgery. [15973/96]
Minister for Health (Mr. Noonan, Limerick East) Michael Noonan
Minister for Health (Mr. Noonan, Limerick East): I propose to take Questions Nos. 130 and 246 together.
The success of joint replacement surgery such as hip replacement has led to an upward surge in demand for these services all over the country. The increase in the demand for orthopaedic services has in turn led to demands for an expansion of facilities to cater for this new workload.
A number of measures have been taken to improve access to orthopaedic services for people in Limerick and the mid-west. Phase I of the re-development of Limerick Regional Hospital, which I sanctioned, includes the provision of a dedicated orthopaedic theatre and building work on this project is ongoing. Planning of Phase II of Limerick Regional Hospital is presently in progress and will incorporate a 30 bed orthopaedic ward.
In 1995 I provided £300,000 to Croom Orthopaedic Hospital, for ward refurbishment and £90,000 for the acquisition of orthopaedic medical equipment. Between the years 1993 and 1996 inclusive, a total of £2.844 million has been  allocated to the Mid-Western Health Board under the Waiting List Initiatives. Orthopaedic surgery has been one of the specialiaties which has been specifically targeted and a total of 700 additional procedures have been funded in the Mid-Western Health Board area. There are currently 185 people on the Mid-Western Health Board's waiting list for hip replacement surgery and the average waiting time is 12-16 months.
When taken together I am sure that the measures which I outlined will improve access to orthopaedic services for the people of the Mid-Western Health Board area.
Dáil Éireann 468 Written Answers. Hospital Waiting Lists.