Hospitals fined €1.158 million

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
Beaumont Hospital 60,929 568,801 234,962 864,692 172,938
Tallaght Hospital 9,168 110,959 336,822 456,949 91,390
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
Roscommon Hospital 5,077 70,293 75,371 15,074
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
Connolly Hospital 35,472 35,472 7,094
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
Portiuncula Hospital 20,177 20,177 4,035
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
Rotunda Hospital 7,810 7,810 1,562
Ennis Hospital 4,556 4,556 911
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
Nenagh 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
Grand Total 376,433 1,748,417 3,665,500 5,790,350 1,158,070