The latest figures which are available indicate that a total of 158 patients were referred abroad for treatment under EC regulations in 1993.
The majority of these patients were referred abroad for specialised procedures such as bone marrow transplants, heart-lung transplants, and liver transplants, and referrals were necessary due to the unavailability of the services or the shortfall in facilities for such operations in this country.
To address the shortfalls additional resources have been provided in recent years to allow upgrading of services, including the bone marrow transplant unit at Our Lady's Hospital in Crumlin. Work is also well underway on the new oncology-haematology-bone marrow transplant unit at St. James's Hospital. These developments when complete should allow the National Centre at the two hospitals to deal with most of the bone marrow transplant cases arising in this country.