HSE hoping to develop new chemotherapy day unit at UHK

The HSE is looking at developing new chemotherapy day unit facilities at University Hospital Kerry.

Management and oncologists are considering the best option, which would future proof the cancer service for the next 10 years.

That’s according to General Manager of University Hospital Kerry, Fearghal Grimes, who was responding to a question from Tralee Cllr Mikey Sheehy at the recent HSE South Regional Health Forum.

University Hospital Kerry currently provides daycase chemotherapy and cancer services five days a week by three visiting Consultant Oncologists from Cork University Hospital.

This takes place in outpatient rooms in the Palliative Care Day Centre and in a 12-chair unit in the day ward of the hospital.

The service opened in 2001 and treated 831 patients, but last year it dealt with 4,762 patients.

There’s been a corresponding increase in outpatients attendance, with 3,231 patients reviewed last year.

General Manager of UHK, Fearghal Grimes says hospital management, the oncologists and HSE Estates are currently considering options that will future proof the service for the next 10 years.

This will include separate Chemotherapy Day Unit and outpatient facilities, installation of Chemotherapy Compounding Unit, isolations facilities, and sufficient space to treat patients and their families.

The preferred option is a stand-alone new build adjacent to the front of the hospital, linked by an enclosed corridor.

It’s hoped to have this review completed shortly and the next stage of the development process will start directly afterwards.