The new interim outpatient department for Letterkenny General Hospital is due to open on Monday at a cost of at least €1.65 million euro.
Many of the outpatient clinics which have been held at different locations around the county since July’s flood will be moved to the temporary facility at Scally Place, just off Justice Walsh Road in Letterkenny. Around three quarters of the 80,000 outpatients appointments made by the hospital annually will be held there.
The interim department was handed over to hospital management on Monday. All the hospital’s clinics will be held at the new site or at the hospital. General Manager Sean Murphy, said the opening of the interim department marked the end of the crisis period that the hospital has been in since the flood.
The HSE has said it has decided to source off-site accommodation for the outpatient department for two years. The clinics that will be held at the facility are: medical, surgical, haematology, renal, diabetic, ear, nose and throat (ENT), neurology, orthopaedic, fracture clinics, maxillofacial, dermatology, St. Luke’s and geriatrics.
The clinics which will continue to be provided from the main hospital include ante-natal, gynaecology, paediatrics, breast clinics, and oncology.
The building, which is located close to Letterkenny’s courthouse, already houses the Primary Care Centre.
Mr. Murphy stressed that patients must ensure they check information they receive on appointments carefully in the coming weeks and do not assume that the clinics will be held in the same place as last time.
The cost of opening the facility includes rent, refitting and the cost of new equipment. The facility includes a new X-ray room equipped with a digital radiography machine at a cost of €250,000. Director of Nursing and Midwifery, Dr. Anne Flood, said the site required minimal work and presented the quickest solution. The department will have 27 clinical rooms compared to 18 before the flood.