New Intensive Care Wing Opens at Tallaght University Hospital

ICU Opening August 26th (August 26th 2022) Tallaght University Hospital hosted a visit by Minister of Health Stephen Donnelly TD as he officially opened the Hospitals new 1,750 m2 Intensive Care Wing.  The expanded space on the first floor of the Hospital has 12 ICU beds, each of which are in a single room. The additional beds which provide care to the most critically ill patients are located across two zones, each with their own central nursing station.

The new ICU expansion represents a major service development for TUH and the Dublin Midlands Hospital Group (DMHG). The Critical Care Area in TUH caters for a catchment area of 650,000 people and prior to today’s opening comprised of nine Intensive Care Unit (ICU) beds, five Post Anaesthesia Critical Care Unit (PACCU) beds which manage elective and emergency postoperative patients and two High Dependency Unit (HDU) beds located in the coronary care unit. The additional beds will enable the Hospital to continue to provide high quality medical care to the increasing numbers of critically ill patients.

Commenting on the opening of the new wing Minister Donnelly said “It is with great pleasure that I officially open the new ICU wing, seeing first-hand the most modern ICU facilities in the country, supported by the HSE and my Department as part of the Strategic Plan for Critical Care, which I brought to Government in 2020. It is facilities like this that have enabled us to expand nationally to over 300 critical care beds, up from 255 at the start of 2020. I would like to congratulate everyone involved in the project ensuring it has opened both on schedule and on budget.”

“The opening of our new ICU extension is part of the Hospitals strategy to improve infrastructure with the priority of improving access for our most vulnerable patients and prepare the Hospital for the increasing demands of serving a rapidly growing population. Patients requiring ICU care will now receive it in the appropriate and superior location, ensuring the alternative areas previously used for ICU patients can be used for their proper purpose i.e. post anaesthetic care unit which facilitates complex post-operative patients” said Lucy Nugent, Chief Executive of TUH at the official opening.

The additional beds will be supported by 146 whole time equivalent staff made up of nursing, consultant intensivists, registrars and Health & Social Care Professionals. The recruitment for medical staff is completed, the recruitment of the additional Health & Social Care professionals are at the final stages of recruitment. Nursing recruitment is ongoing with 50 posts filled and the remaining staff being in place by January / February 2022. The existing ICU in TUH which is 24 years old will be refurbished between September-December, the additional bed capacity will increase steadily from 12 to 21 beds from January onwards upon completion of the refurbishment programme.

TUH was officially designated as a Trauma Unit in April 2021. This, combined with expansion in ICU workload including the Naas General Hospital trauma by-pass and TUH critical care outreach, the Hospital will be in a better positon to cater for the increased demand for ICU care.

Editors Notes
TUH is one of the two main academic teaching hospitals of Trinity College Dublin - specialising in the training and professional development of staff in areas such as nursing, health & social care professionals, emergency medicine and surgery, amongst many others. TUH is part of the Dublin Midlands Hospital Group which serves a population of over 1.2M across seven counties.

The Hospital has 456 inpatient adult beds, 74 onsite day beds for our Dialysis, Oncology, Infusion, Haematology, Cardiology, Bone & Joint and minor surgery services. The Hospital also has a Day Surgery Centre located near the Hospital which has four theatres and 25 day beds for elective surgery. There are an additional 61 offsite beds under TUH governance. The Hospital is staffed by over 3,200 people with 63 different nationalities represented on the team.

The Hospital is a provider of local, regional and national specialties. It is also a national urology centre, the second largest provider of dialysis services in the country and is a designated trauma unit.

The Hospital is a public, voluntary teaching hospital funded by the Health Service Executive, It opened on June 21st 1998 bringing together over 600 years of medical and nursing care and education from the Adelaide, Meath & National Children’s Hospitals.

As a model 4 hospital we are cognisant of our role as a provider of national and tertiary services but also of our role in the local community. We are working to a vision of people caring for people to live better lives. The Hospital strategy reflects a continuation of that effort with our patients, their families/carers and health partners to achieve a fully integrated care approach to every service we provide. 

The Hospital has a series of planned capital developments to address significant capacity shortages, enhance the infrastructure and environment for patients, their families, the public and staff.  A key aim is to improve access to our services. The strategy includes a combination of care pathway redesign, digital enablement and capacity investment actions aimed specifically to improve wait times. This strategic approach will consolidate the Hospital’s position as a leader in integrated care. Given our unique position with a vibrant community and the growing Tallaght health quarter we will strive to fulfil the potential truly to be a hospital without walls.