The Minister for Health, Dr James Reilly TD today announced a reorganisation of public hospitals into six hospital groups, namely: Dublin North East; Dublin Midlands; Dublin East; South/South West; West/North West; and Midwest.
Each group of hospitals will work together as single cohesive entities managed as one, to provide acute care for patients in their area, integrating with community and primary care.
A policy framework will now be devised by the Department of Health and work on the roll-out of the groups will commence immediately. This will be overseen a National Strategic Advisory Group and driven by the HSE. Group Chairpersons and CEOs will be appointed as soon as possible and preliminary governance arrangements will be put in place. Each hospital will be established on an administrative basis during an interim period. The hospital groups will each establish an interim group board to which the management team will report. The Chair of the interim board will be appointed by the Minister. The Chair will then nominate the board membership for Ministerial approval.
Each of the groups will be led by a group Chief Executive Officer who will be the accountable officer for the group. The requirement for individual hospital management teams will be determined by the size of the hospital and the range of services provided at each site. However, the management teams of hospital groups must comprise the following key posts: Group Chief Executive Officer; Chief Clinical Director; Chief Academic Officer; Chief Director of Nursing; Chief Finance Officer; and Chief Operations Officer.
The hospital groups, according to the Minister, “will secure the future of our smaller hospitals. When the new groups are established, services can be exchanged between sites. This will result in the maintenance of activity in smaller hospitals and will allow them to focus on the provision of care that is safe and appropriate”.
Each grouping will also include a primary academic partner.