Annual Report: Chair Report

Anne Maher Chair

Hospital Groups have been in existence since 2013. The RCSI Hospital Group continues to develop and to make good progress despite not being empowered by legislation.

The Group operates under a Board established on an administrative basis and reports to the Minister for Health.  As Chair, I would like to commend the commitment of the Board members who are making an important contribution to developing the Group.

The Group held a Strategy Development Day last Autumn and has agreed its Strategy for 2019 -2023.  The Group’s Strategic Objectives focus on improving access to clinical services and ensuring effective service integration. The Strategy takes into account Slaintecare and is based on the plans for the health service which have been publicised to date. In particular, it includes development of our Hospital Group towards linkage with the Community Health Organisations relevant to our area.

The Executive Management Team is working well and providing an important service to the Group and our seven hospitals. It awaits further empowerment to enable it to operate to its full potential and to avoid unnecessary duplication between the Department of Health, the HSE and the Hospital Group.

The Group focus continues to be on operating as a single campus and using sites to their fullest capacity. This involves the movement of patients and clinicians within the Group. For instance, the Group has used the available capacity in Connolly and Cavan hospitals to treat patients on long waiting lists for endoscopy and routine, non-complex surgery.

Good progress has been made in ensuring optimal maternity, neonatal and gynaecological care for all of our patients. This includes the continued development of the Senior Incident Management Forum which provides an opportunity for sharing of clinical performance metrics across the Group, as well as opportunities for shared learning from adverse outcomes.  I would like to particularly acknowledge the support of the Rotunda Hospital within this area.

Our objective of providing effective, safe and timely care for patient catchment area  has moved forward during 2018.

Importantly the Hospital Group has secured simultaneous reductions in the number of patient waiting for admission in ED, the number of patients waiting for elective treatment and the number of patients waiting for OPD appointments.

The 2018 HIQA “National Patient Experience Survey”   demonstrates positive patient rating of 84% – 86% experience good – very good across the Hospital Group.

New bed capacity has been introduced within Our Lady of Lourdes, Drogheda

New surgical treatment capability has been introduced with the securement of the daVinci robot within Beaumont Hospital

The Group continues to work in association with the HSE and the Department of Health and I would like to thank the officials of both for their assistance to the Group.

The academic linkage with hospital services continues to be important for the Group.  We benefit from the great support of our academic partner, the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, and also from its teaching and research.  I would like to express our gratitude to the RCSI President and Council and in particular to its Chief Executive, Professor Cathal Kelly, for his never failing help.

On behalf of the Board I would like to thank our CEO, Ian Carter, who continues to provide a very high level of leadership, professional skills and hard work in developing the Group and providing the best possible level of service to our patients.  We owe him a considerable debt and look forward to our continuing relationship with him at Board and Executive levels.

I also want to thank the Executive Management Team, Group Clinical Director Professor Patrick Broe and the Clinical Directors, the Hospital Site Managers and all of our staff for their dedication and commitment during this year.

Anne Maher