The Mercy University Hospital Cork Foundation has submitted a planning application for a new care centre to be built in the city centre. The foundation has requested permission for the demolition of numbers 7, 8, 9 and 10 Woods Street, to be replaced by a new building which will range in height from two to three storeys.
Mercy Foundation CEO Mícheál Sheridan said the project, which is non-medical, has been in the pipeline for several years.
“The intention is to open a care centre that will be available to people who have just received a diagnosis," he said.
“Many patients will have travelled some distance to the hospital, from west Cork and other places, so this will provide them with a space to go and absorb the news they have been given and get more information. We see this is a final piece of the puzzle in terms of patient care. For years we have been offering third-party counselling services, this will allow us to provide a place dedicated to taking care of the psychological impact of a cancer diagnosis.”
The location, less than 200 metres from the hospital, is crucial to the plans.
“The key thing is that it is steps away from the hospital, just a moment’s walk. It will be run on a non-appointment basis, for people to come in as they need.”
In the future, they hope to provide information services to the local community from the care centre.
“Long term, we intend it to become a hub for cancer awareness, providing information on symptoms and other services.”
The Foundation also intend to provide help and support to people at the other end of their journey, as they adjust back to their normal lives.
“A cancer diagnosis completely takes over your life and cancer survivors have to make an adjustment following treatment, after being given the all clear.”
The development, measuring 421 square metres, will include offices, reception, waiting area, social space, multi-purpose space and counselling rooms. It will be 100% funded by the Foundation, with a significant amount of the total already raised.
A decision on the application is expected by August 14.