Press Release:

Wednesday 21 April 2021

The Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly TD, has announced details of two areas to be funded under the recently established €5 million Women’s Health Fund:

  • Two community-based Ambulatory Gynaecology Services governed by two acute hospitals (Tallaght University Hospital, and University Maternity Hospital Limerick)
  • Expansion of the endometriosis service at Tallaght University Hospital (TUH) to deliver a specialist endometriosis centre for the management and treatment of all forms of endometriosis, with particular focus on advanced and complex cases for which there is no ready access in Ireland.

Minister Donnelly said:

The proposals announced today mark the first two areas to be funded from the €5million Women’s Health Fund. These proposals will address two key areas for improving the health outcomes and experiences of women and girls in Ireland, identified through the work of the Women’s Health Taskforce and in consultation with women, the Department and health system stakeholders. The provision of these two community-based Ambulatory Gynaecology Services in Tallaght and Limerick/Nenagh and the expansion of the endometriosis service at Tallaght University Hospital will significantly increase access and efficiency in the provision of these services.

Minister of State, Anne Rabbitte welcomed the announcement of these two community-based services for women, clearly identified through the work of the Women’s Health Taskforce.

The first area to be funded is the provision of two community-based Ambulatory Gynaecology Services governed by two acute hospitals (Tallaght University Hospital, and University Maternity Hospital Limerick, though located in Nenagh General Hospital) under the banner of the Women’s Health Taskforce. This project, with an associated cost of €1.415m, will see the establishment of one-stop “see and treat” gynaecology clinics in the community in which women can be seen and assessed, following referral by their GP to the hospital’s general gynaecology services. This service will address a clear and identified need, as gynaecology services are acknowledged and recognised as being a service area that continues to be under significant and growing pressure. These one-stop-see-and-treat clinics will play a significant role to improve access to gynaecology, reducing waiting times and improving clinical outcomes for women.

The second area to be funded is the expansion of the endometriosis service at Tallaght University Hospital (TUH), with an associated cost of €641k, will deliver a specialist endometriosis centre for the management and treatment of all forms of endometriosis, with particular focus on advanced and complex cases for which there is no ready access in Ireland. Endometriosis is estimated to affect 1 in 10 women and represents one of the top four categories of symptoms that comprise approximately 80% of gynaecology referrals. The provision of a secure, supported, expanded and specialist service in Tallaght University Hospital will help to improve both clinical outcomes and overall care experience for women suffering from this debilitating condition.