THE number of people waiting on endoscopy procedures at Naas General Hospital has increased dramatically to 1,380, four to five times higher than other hospitals.
Planning permission for a new endoscopy unit was granted back in December 2014 but the continued delay in providing the new unit is adding to waiting times said local TD Emmet Stagg.
“Despite repeated promises the project has stalled and will now have to await the Mid Term Review of the Capital Plan to see if funding will be provided,” said Deputy Stagg.
“Astoundingly 8% of people requiring an endoscopy in the State are on the waiting list at Naas General Hospital. This is simply unacceptable. Looking at the waiting list at comparable hospitals elsewhere we can see how the Naas figure is so out of kilter with other hospitals.”
There are 191 people on the waiting list at the Midland regional Hospital in Mullingar, 216 at the Midland regional Hospital in Portlaoise and 354 in Tullamore.
An endoscopy is a minimally invasive procedure used to diagnose various conditions by close examination of internal organ and body structures and can detect polyps, tumors, Crohns disease and importantly, cancer.
“The figures on the waiting list for endoscopy at Naas General Hospital showed clearly that a new modern endoscopy unit was required. In fact the figures are so bad that in addition to the new unit, patients from Naas will have to be transferred to other hospitals to get down the numbers waiting,” he added.
Mr Stagg vowed to pressurise the Minister for Health for the new unit and action on waiting lists.
A statement from the hospital confirmed that they are waiting for approval to proceed to tender.