Jimmy Reilly opens gut unit in BTown

Minister for Health, Dr. James Reilly, T.D. officially opened the new Endoscopy Department at Connolly Hospital.

At over 20,000 sq ft the state of the art Endoscopy Suite is one of
the largest endoscopy facilities in Ireland. Procedures carried out
in the department include upper endoscopy to diagnose and treat common
digestive conditions such as acid reflux, ulcers, Helicobacter pylori
infection and coeliac disease and routine colonoscopy for the early
detection and prevention of colon cancer as well as diagnosis of
inflammatory bowel disease.

Staffing in the Endoscopy Department consists of two
gastroenterologists, three respiratory physicians, five consultant
surgeons and twenty registered endoscopy nurses who work closely
together to provide patient care prior to, during and following each
of the 4000 procedures performed annually.

Minister for Health, Dr. James Reilly, T.D., speaking at the official
opening said “ despite the current economic situation it is very clear
that important diagnostic services such as endoscopy must remain a key
priority within the hospital system. Patients deserve an effective
endoscopy system, which provides services in a timely fashion and in
accordance with high standards and best practice. With this new
endoscopy suite Connolly Hospital is well on the way towards being
accredited in accordance with such standards and practice”.

Dr. Richard Farrell, Consultant Gastroenterologist said “The
department receives over 100 referral letters every week which are
directly triaged by Consultant Gastroenterologists. In addition to
providing Rapid Access Endoscopy Referral for patients presenting to
the Emergency Department, the department operates a centralised
endoscopy waiting list with all urgent referrals seen within 28 days
and the majority of all non-urgent referrals within 3 months of
referral. Because endoscopy procedures require patients to fast, we
see patients from as early as 8 am to get patients in and out of the
hospital early with minimal inconvenience or discomfort with over half
of upper endoscopies performed without sedation to facilitate patients
returning to work. We were delighted to be selected as one of the
initial 15 candidate screening centres for the National Colorectal
Screening Programme and are working towards achieving confirmed status
as a screening colonoscopy unit by 2012”.

The Endoscopy Suite which is situated above the Emergency Department
adjacent to the main Medical and Surgical Inpatient Wards comprises
three endoscopy rooms, a 17 bed recovery unit, a laboratory offering
direct access breath testing and pH probe facilities, on-site IBD
(Inflammatory Bowel Disease) nurse and haemochromatosis support,
consultation rooms, relative’s room, patient change/prep facilities, a
discharge lounge and library. The department has state of the art
decontamination facilities and equipment incorporating a purpose built
traceability system for all endoscopes.

In addition to providing endoscopy services, therapeutic procedures
performed include variceal and haemhorrhoidal banding, stricture
dilation, Botox injection and PEG placement. The Endoscopy staff
assist with approximately 300 bronchoscopies, 400 venesections and 500
breath tests annually.