Monaghan Minor Injuries Unit alone in not operating 7-day service – Matt Carthy TD

The Minor Injuries Unit at Monaghan Hospital is the only such unit that does not operate on a 7-day week basis and is alone in not opening on Bank Holidays.  It also has the shortest opening hours of any of the 10 MIUs across the state.

This week, Cavan Monaghan Dáil Deputy Matt Carthy said that there is no justification for these restricted operating hours within Monaghan’s MIU as figures released to Sinn Féin show that the unit had almost as many attendees in 2021 as another unit that operates seven days per week with substantially longer opening hours.

Deputy Carthy confirmed that he has been working closely with his party’s Health Spokesperson, David Cullinane, on this issue.  He said that there is an inarguable case for the opening hours at Monaghan Hospital’s Minor Injuries Unit to be expanded and for fees associated with MIU presentations to be scrapped.

Monaghan Minor Injuries Unit operates just five days a week, excluding bank holidays, and is open from 9am to 5pm.  The other Minor Injuries Units in the state are located at Hospitals in Bantry, Ennis, Dundalk, Mallow, Cork Mercy, Nenagh, Roscommon, Loughlinstown St Columcille’s and Limerick St John’s.  All of these operate on a seven-day week basis, including bank holidays, and open from 8am until between 6pm and 8pm each day.

But, according to figures released to Sinn Féin by the HSE, Monaghan MIU received 5,374 attendees last year, almost identical to the number attending Bantry MIU despite significantly lower operating times.  While the attendance rates for other MIUs are higher, Deputy Carthy claims this is entirely understandable considering their much broader opening hours.

Cavan Monaghan Sinn Féin TD, Matt Carthy, has repeatedly told Minister Stephen Donnelly that the Minor Injuries Unit should be utilised in order to ease pressure on both GP services and A&E departments.  He confirmed this week that he has again written to the Minister urging his direct intervention to expand Monaghan Minor Injuries Unit.

Deputy Carthy said this week:

“Monaghan Minor Injuries Unit is a service that should be widely utilised and I encourage people to attend when appropriate.

“But, the potential of the service provided is undermined by the reduced opening times.  Expanding the hours and days would be the single most impactful intervention government can take to revitalise Monaghan Hospital.

“The decision of previous Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael governments to remove services from Monaghan Hospital continues to have serious negative repercussions.  A&E services were withdrawn from Monaghan and resulted in drastic overcrowding at Cavan and Drogheda hospitals.

“The Minor Injuries Unit can serve to ease pressure on both GP practices and A & E departments.

“But Minister Donnelly confirmed to me that he has no intention of seeking the expansion of this service.  Likewise there has been no movement to remove the €75 fee for attendees despite the fact that the HSE cannot even outline how much funds this fee raises and the clear evidence that the fee acts as a disincentive – leading to further demands on GPs and A&E.

“For Sinn Fein, it will remain a priority for us to force the expansion of the Minor Injuries Unit at Monaghan Hospital and the removal of the associated fees”.

NOTE:

Hospital MIU            Operating Hours          Days                2021 Attendees

Bantry                         8am – 7.30pm                     7days                   5,443

Ennis                              8am-8pm                             7days                  11,222

Louth                             9am-8pm                              7days                 11,327

Mallow                          8am-8pm                             7days                   7,505

Cork Mercy                8am-8pm                             7days               16,406

Monaghan                  9am-5pm                           5days              5,374

Nenagh                         8am-8pm                            7days               9,971

Roscommon               8am-8pm                           7days               9,336

St. Columcilles            8am-6pm                         7days               8,747

Limerick St. Johns      8am-7pm                        7days               12,688

ENDS

Monaghan Minor Injuries Unit alone in not operating 7-day service
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