File photo: Naas Hospital
Construction work on a planned extension to Naas Hospital is likely to start next year.
Labour Party Kildare North election candidate Emmet Stagg said the €17m. development includes an endoscopy unit as well as a new physical medicine unit.
The investment will also provide a physical therapy unit, new oncology services and day procedure departments.
Planning permission for the project was granted in December 2014, said Mr. Stagg, adding “despite repeated promises by Ministers for Health the project has not progressed.”
Mr. Stagg said the Health Service Executive “have now advised that funding for the project is included in the HSE's 2018-2022 Capital Programme and it is anticipated that construction will commence in 2019.
“The HSE did state that this was subject to the availability of capital funding and the progress of other priority projects.” He added: “The fact that the HSE anticipate construction will commence in 2019 is very positive.”
A gastrointestinal endoscopy is a minimally invasive procedure used to diagnose various conditions and can detect polyps, tumours, Crohn's disease and cancer. Last November the waiting list at Naas Hospital accounted for one tenth of the waiting list nationwide.
At that time the list for 18 months and over at Naas accounted for 63% of the State's waiting list for 18 months and over. The waiting list for 15-18 months at Naas was 55% of the State's waiting list for the same period.
The waiting list for 12-15 months at Naas was 32% of the State's waiting list for the same period. The delays prompted the HSE to outsource endoscopy procedures to other hospitals.