The Friends of St. Ita’s Community Hospital was established on 28th March 2003 and officially launches on 22nd April 2003 as a voluntary fundraising group with a membership of 20 people from West Limerick, the catchment area of St. Ita’s community Hospital.
The group was formed with the following Mission in mind-
- To support Management and staff at St. Ita’s community Hospital in delivering an effective service to the community.
- To raise funds for the provision of services, equipment and aids for the elderly residing in St. Ita’s Community Hospital.
- The raise funds for the provision of social activities for the elderly.
- To assist in every other way possible to continue to improve the present very high standard of care, comfort and well being of the patients in St. Ita’s Community Hospital.
The Friends of St. Ita’s Community Hospital, Newcastle West was launched in April, 2003 as a voluntary fundraising group tasked with assisting Management in the implementation of certain projects they were unable to get off the ground due to a lack of funding.
Our top priority was the provision of a hospice support unit for West Limerick which became the main focus of our fundraising.
The enormous success of our campaign towards this end, becomes readily apparent.
Indeed, the many Press Statements and catalogue of photographs very effectively charter the progress of our success through its various stages. And also serve to tell their own story in recounting the numerous, and often spectacular, fundraising events which have see us raise in excess of €2 Million over our first 5½ years or so.
This indeed, is a truly phenomenal achievement by any standard and all thanks to the outstanding support and the unparalleled generosity of the very many wonderful people, clubs, groups, organisations, schools and many more including the corporate and business sector. Indeed, one businessman in particular , namely, Mr. JP. McManus , merits special
mention and to whom we owe enormous gratitude for his hugely generous allocation of €¾ Million , from the JP. McManus golf Pro-Am in 2005, to our hospice project.
From our funds raised to-date we have been able to contribute €1.345 Million to the new hospice unit, which has been built and currently in the process of being furnished with the question of staff to run the unit still to be fully addressed. This is proving to be problematic due to the current economic climate. However, we remain hopeful for 2009
opening of the unit given the huge amount of voluntary funding invested in the project !
In addition to the Hospice Unit we have also funded a number of other projects at St. Ita’s including the provision of a new dayroom for Ward 6 at a cost of €200,000.00, a new patient minibus costing €64,000.00 and other essential equipment for the patients.
As chairman of the Friends of St. Ita’s committee, I wish to take this opportunity, to acknowledge with very grateful thanks the truly wonderful public support which has been the hallmark of our success continues to flow, with enormous enthusiasm and goodwill, from all sections of the community of West Limerick and beyond. I might add, that has brought with it an unprecedented level of success that we could never have thought imaginable when we started out in April 2003 – truly astounding !
Also our very sincere thanks to both the Broadcast Media (Limerick Live 95FM – County News and West Limerick 102) and the Print Media (the Limerick Leader and the Weekly Observer whom we especially thank for their extensive coverage) Needless to say we are extremely grateful for the ongoing very positive publicity that we continue to receive and which serves to keep attention very focused on the progress of our fundraising activities.
St Ita’s Community Hospital, Newcastlewest, is a community based hospital providing services for the people of Limerick. Services provided include rehabilitation, assessment, palliative day care, respite and continuing care. There are currently 91 beds, of which 65 are continuing care beds, two are short stay beds, six are respite beds and 18 are rehabilitation beds.
The hospital was built in 1841 and there have been many improvements to the hospital over the years and, in particular, in recent times. The Rehabilitation and Day Hospital services opened in 1989 and Palliative Day Care services opened in 2009. A dedicated ambulant dementia unit was opened in May, 2014 and the new Rehabilitation Unit was completed and officially opened in early 2016.
St. Ita’s philosophy of care is based on respect for the rights and dignity of the residents and patients and, ideally, this care should be delivered within an environment that promotes peoples’ dignity and quality of life. In that context, the built environment should –
1 Provide a safe and secure environment for residents and patients;
2 Promote the privacy and dignity of residents and patients;
3 Offer residents and patients a stimulating environment for daily activities;
4 Enable residents to have easy access throughout the hospital;
5 Provide a setting that will facilitate staff to deliver high quality care;
6 Meet standards required by law and regulation.
The physical environment in the long stay residential accommodation needs to be upgraded to reflect the above requirements. Personalised and homely single/double rooms are required with complementary dining and sitting areas. Family areas and accessible communal spaces and outdoor areas would all help to improve the lived experience for residents.
To bring the long stay residential accommodation to the standards outlined above it is anticipated that it would cost in the region of €2.8m. These costs are indicative costs only and based on high level indicators. The estimate does not include any survey or contingency