5 April 2012 No Comments by The Northern Standard

The Health Service Executive has been asked to consider Monaghan General Hospital as a possible location for the development of a primary care centre.
Fianna Fåil Co Councillor Robbie Gallagher told The Northern Standard yesterday that he and his Co Council colleagues Brian McKenna and David Maxwell had advocated the move at the recent meeting of the HSE’s Regional Health Forum for Dublin and the North-East.
A primary care facility was supposed to be prioritized for Monaghan Town in the aftermath of the loss of acute services at its hospital a number of years ago but no substantive progress has been made in obtaining a site for the development.
Colr Gallagher said yesterday that the people of Monaghan Town had “waited long enough” for the primary care facility, and that it made more sense for the hospital site to be used for its provision than for the HSE to involve itself in what would inevitably be a protracted process of acquiring an alternative location and clearing the planning processes required to be fulfilled before construction.
“The hospital already has much of the medical infrastructure needed, it is well located and accessible with parking onsite. The activity already going on in the hospital can only compliment primary care activities and it also makes good financial sense as well,” Colr Gallagher stated.
“Only this week the Minister of State with Responsibility for Primary Care, Roisin Shortall suggested that vacant government owned properties could be used for care centres so I see no reason why we shouldn’t look at providing Monaghan’s primary care in the hospital.
“The objective of primary care is to cater for the majority of healthcare needs in a community type setting or one stop shop.
“Only 55 primary care centres have been built so far across the country which is very disappointing. Very little progress has been made on delivering on the Primary Care Strategy. We should be much more advanced.
“The people of Monaghan were promised high quality primary care as services were moved from Monaghan and we are still waiting. The HSE should now look into this proposal as a matter of urgency and I look forward to their response.”

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