The new children’s hospital will be a world class facility to look after children and young people from all over Ireland who have complicated and serious illnesses and who are in need of specialist and complex care. The hospital and the two satellite centres in Dublin will provide all the ‘local hospital’ paediatric secondary care to children in local population. The project will bring together three existing children’s hospitals: Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital Crumlin, Temple Street Children’s University Hospital and the National Children’s Hospital at Tallaght Hospital. These hospitals will merge to form the Children’s Hospital Group before transition to the new facilities.
The prioritisation of the new children’s hospital and satellite centres reflects the sustained political commitment to delivering better child-centred, family-focused healthcare outcomes for the children and young people of Ireland.
The new children’s hospital and satellite centres will operate on a hub and spoke basis and are part of a wider integrated programme of changes designed to improve the future health and wellbeing of children and young people in Ireland. The HSE National Model of Care for Paediatrics and Neonatology is the framework for how and where healthcare services will be delivered, managed and organised nationally. It is the means by which the Irish healthcare service can respond to changing healthcare needs, address unmet need, improve the existing model of service delivery and incorporate national and international best practices.
The satellite centres are an integral part of, and come under the governance of, the new children’s hospital. This approach reflects leading international practice for enhanced clinical outcomes by centralising highly specialised and complex tertiary and quaternary services and by localising secondary services as close to the child’s home as possible. Staff will be rotated between the new children’s hospital and the satellite centres to ensure the highest quality of care can be provided in all the centres.
The new children’s hospital will provide tertiary and quaternary care on a national basis, and in some specialities on an all-island basis, and with the satellite centres provide secondary care for the Greater Dublin Area. The new children’s hospital will link with local and regional paediatric centres (Hub and spoke model) via an integrated national clinical network with a shared care model of working and better integration via contemporary ICT. The children’s hospital located on the campus shared with St. James’s Hospital will provide in-patient care and all surgery (including day surgery), while the satellite centres at Tallaght Hospital and Connolly Hospital will provide urgent care and outpatient care.
The desired excellence in modern paediatric practice cannot be achieved without an embedded culture of and focus on research, education and innovation. To this end, the new children’s hospital and satellite centres will be a research-intensive academic healthcare institution, which creates a path between the patient, the classroom and the laboratory. Patient proximate research and second and third level education facilities are embedded within the proposed buildings.
The proposed Children’s Research and Innovation Centre, which is an integral part of the new children’s hospital, will be co-located with the existing academic facilities on the campus at St James’s Hospital. This maximises clinical linkages and creates a centre of excellence for both paediatric and adult healthcare research on the campus.
A 52 bed family accommodation building is proposed adjacent to the new children’s hospital on the campus at St James’s Hospital. This will provide essential facilities for parents and siblings of sick children with extended hospital stays to be able to stay together so that they can be with their sick child at what is a very traumatic time for all. This is especially important for families who reside outside of the Greater Dublin Area. The facility is connected to the new children’s hospital through a shared basement.