July 18, 2024
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‘It’s a major priority of mine’ – Minister to make announcement on St Luke’s MRI scanner this week

By COLIN BARTLEY

KILKENNY may, in the coming days, finally know when it will have its own MRI scanner in St Luke’s General Hospital.

The long-running saga appears to be coming to a conclusion after the Health Minister Simon Harris this week promised that an announcement on the scanner project is imminent. But local health campaigners will be forgiven for not holding their breath after a raft of similar promises were made over the past year.

Speaking to KCLR’s Eimear Ni Bhraonáin at the National Ploughing Championship last week, Minister Harris said: “It’s a major priority of mine and it’s a major priority of the Irish East Hospital Group (IEHG).

“The community has done a lot of fundraising and I’d like to thank them for that. On top of what has been raised there is a requirement for a significant amount of taxpayers’ money.

“I published a capital plan a couple of weeks ago and in that is absolute certainty there is the funding to deliver the MRI for St Luke’s in Kilkenny. What we are now waiting on is a date from the HSE to go to tender.”

Minister Harris confirmed he expects to get a definitive timeframe soon and will make an announcement then.

The Friends of St Luke’s Group has campaigned for an MRI scanner for over a decade, raising €250,000 for the project.

In May 2017, the Health Service Executive (HSE) committed €2.45 million to the project. The Government committed a further €1.25 million for the scanner last year.

 

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