Thirty nine acute hospitals have been fined a total of well over £1 million by the HSE for failing to meet their 18 month waiting list targets for August and September of this year, writes Maureen Browne.
The only two hospitals to escape being fined were Bantry General Hospital in Co Cork and St. Columcille’s Hospital in Loughlinstown in Dublin.
Weary health managers say that the reason most hospitals failed to meet their targets was due to lack of resources and staffing and these type of budget cuts will only make a difficult situation worse.
“It just doesn’t make sense,” said one very annoyed senior manager. “The HSE is paying for patients to be treated in private hospitals or sent abroad for treatment. If we had the money we could treat them in our own hospitals, but instead they take the money off us. We are being pilloried to meet impossible targets with budgets which we knew were inadequate from the beginning.”
Other managers point out the particular difficulties faced by hospitals with tertiary and/or national specialties and argue that they have to prioritise emergencies and so called electives which will become emergencies if not admitted.
The HSE said exemptions were applied “for particular specialties and this reflects particular pressures being experienced in certain areas.” It said penalties were calculated based the volume of breaches using the Activity Based Funding model.
The largest fine of €235,000 was levied on Galway University Hospital – which provided 1,176,612 day case, in patient and outpatient services during the two month period.
Next was Beaumont Hospital which was fined €172,938 – it provided 864,632 services during August and September. Tallaght which provided 456,049 services was fined €91,390, University Hospital Waterford was fined €84,244 (it provided 421,218 services) and the Mater Hospital in Dublin which provided 416,448 services was fined €84,244.
|Hospital||Day Case||Inpatient||OP||Grand Total||Penalty over 5 months|
|Galway University Hospital||105,638||307,023||763,951||1,176,612||235,322|
|University Hospital Waterford||12,976||17,236||391,006||421,218||84,244|
|Mater Misericordiae University Hospital||49,646||243,464||123,339||416,448||83,290|
|Cork University Hospital||17,489||25,855||343,005||386,348||77,270|
|Sligo Regional Hospital||25,951||77,564||222,595||326,110||65,222|
|Letterkenny General Hospital||2,821||9,695||201,768||214,284||42,857|
|St. James’s Hospital||63,750||122,809||22,129||208,688||41,738|
|South Infirmary Victoria University Hospital||5,077||9,695||149,048||163,821||32,764|
|Midland Regional Hospital Tullamore||423||39,859||116,993||157,275||31,455|
|Mayo General Hospital||152,953||152,953||30,591|
|Mercy University Hospital||4,513||34,473||90,470||129,456||25,891|
|Childrens University Hospital Temple Street||108,369||108,369||21,674|
|Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital Crumlin||4,513||51,709||21,478||77,701||15,540|
|St. Vincent’s University Hospital||564||47,400||0||47,964||9,593|
|Lourdes Orthopaedic Hospital Kilcreene||2,821||43,091||45,912||9,182|
|Tallaght Children’s Hospital||45,886||45,886||9,177|
|Croom Orthopaedic Hospital||44,259||44,259||8,852|
|Royal Victoria Eye and Ear Hospital||1,692||33,194||34,887||6,977|
|Midland Regional Hospital Mullingar||30,591||30,591||6,118|
|Cappagh National Orthopaedic Hospital||25,855||25,855||5,171|
|Midland Regional Hospital Portlaoise||4,309||17,573||21,882||4,376|
|Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital Drogheda||0||4,309||17,573||21,882||4,376|
|University Hospital Limerick||4,309||13,017||17,326||3,465|
|Mallow General Hospital||15,621||15,621||3,124|
|Kerry General Hospital||12,366||12,366||2,473|
|St. Michael’s Hospital Dun Laoghaire||9,763||9,763||1,953|
|St. Luke’s General Hospital Kilkenny||3,385||651||4,036||807|
|Naas General Hospital||3,905||3,905||781|
|Wexford General Hospital||1,302||1,302||260|
|Louth County Hospital||651||651||130|
|Cavan General Hospital||651||651||130|
|Bantry General Hospital||0||0||0|
|St. Columcille’s Hospital||0||0||0|