Thursday, 30 May 2013

Questions (294)

Sandra McLellan


294. Deputy Sandra McLellan asked the Minister for Health if any of the new intermediary care vehicles will be located in the east Cork area; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [26563/13]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

A significant reform programme has been underway in recent years in pre-hospital care services, to ensure a clinically driven, nationally co-ordinated system, supported by improved technology. The programme involves a number of measures, including the Performance Improvement Action Plan, development of the intermediate care service (ICS), the trial emergency aeromedical service (EAS), and the NAS Control Centre Reconfiguration Project.

In July 2012, the HSE National Ambulance Service commenced developing non-emergency transport, through a national intermediate care service (ICS), which is key to resolving bed and clinical management pressures. ICS will allow for safe, planned and timely clinical transfers of inpatients to the most appropriate facility, depending on their acuity and clinical needs. This will allow for beds to be made available for higher acuity admissions through emergency departments. ICS will also release emergency resources for emergency functions, for improved response times and performances in pre-hospital care. To date, ICS has been implemented in Cavan, Castleblayney, South County Dublin, Letterkenny, Sligo, Galway, Limerick, Roscommon, Mallow and Bantry. Supported by the 2013 National Service Plan, the NAS intends to expand ICS to Waterford, Cork Tralee, Castlebar and Drogheda and to increase services in Dublin and Galway during 2013. In relation to the particular query raised by the Deputy, as this is a service matter, I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond directly to the Deputy in this matter.