THERE are renewed calls for the HSE and the Government to clarify why an operating theatre has lain idle for 12 years at a Cork hospital.
An operating theatre at Cork University Maternity Hospital (CUMH) has lain idle since the hospital opened in 2007.
It was revealed recently that the number of women waiting for gynaecological operations at CUMH has almost doubled in the past year - from 545 on May 30 last year to 1,041 on June 7 of this year.
Cork TD Michael McGrath (FF) said the delays in operating on these women can have serious implications in terms of cancer and other illnesses developing.
His Fianna Fail colleague, Aindrias Moynihan, has accused the government of failing women in Cork who are waiting unacceptable lengths of time for gynaecological appointments. Deputy Moynihan said he has raised the issue of the idle CUMH theatre with both the Taoiseach and Minister for Health, Simon Harris, on several occasions and has received no answers. The theatre was approved to open in 2017 but still remains unused.
“I have been raising this issue with the Health Minister on numerous occasions, and this week I asked the Taoiseach why the funding for the opening of the second theatre is being withheld,” said Deputy Moynihan.
“However, instead of answering the question he claimed it was an issue for the Health Minister. The situation at CUMH is completely unacceptable,” he added.
“I have met with representatives from the hospital, who are deeply frustrated and very worried about the delay to these women’s treatment.
“They have outlined the serious complications which can arise if women are forced to wait for important and necessary procedures.”