Connacht

  • University Hospital Galway is reminding the public that visitor restrictions continue on St. Dominic's ward due to a number of confirmed cases of Influenza (flu). In order to assist staff in curtailing the spread of the flu virus, it says its imperative that only essential visiting takes place at this time in consultation with nurse management on the ward.

    Infection control procedures are in place on the affected ward and will remain in place until further notice.

    There continue to be cases of flu in the community and anyone who is suffering from symptoms of the flu are asked not visit patients in the hospital to avoid spreading the virus to sick vulnerable patients.

  • A “Drive Safer and for Longer” event takes place at the McWilliam Park Hotel in Claremorris this morning, and is fully booked out.

    The event is being organised by Mayo County Council’s Road Safety Office and Mayo’s Older People’s Council, and will run from 9.30am to 1pm.

    The course is aimed at giving reassurance to drivers over the age of 50, helping them to improve and update their driving skills, and provide advice on changes in road traffic law, road layouts and traffic signs.

  • Irish people have spent more than one-point-seven billion euro on renovating their homes in the last 4 years.

    Over 100 thousand projects have been carried out since the Home Renovation Incentive was launched in 2013.

    In Co Mayo, €17.7 million was spent on renovating 1,364 properties.

    In Roscommon, the spend was over 10 million on 983 properties, while Galway homeowners spent over €65 million over the past 4 years in renovating almost four and a half thousand properties.

    Nationally, the average spend was more than 16 thousand euro, and projects included home extensions, general repair and renovations, window replacements and kitchen replacements.

    Director of the Construction Industry Federation Tom Parlon says the scheme has been a huge success:

  • kilkelly

    €30,000 has been granted for traffic calming measures in the village of Kilkelly.

    Local Fianna Fail Cllr. John Caulfield says Kilkelly is the shortest route on to the N17 for many commuters.

    Cllr. Caulfield says he has fought for some time to have the speed reduced in Kilkelly due to the narrow streets and the safety concerns raised by local residents and businesses.

     

  • €5m is being made available under the latest CLÁR programme, which has reopened this morning.

    The reopening of the scheme has been confirmed by Minister for Rural and Community Development Michael Ring.

    Funding will be available under 3 measures of the programme – the Community Safety Measure; Play Areas and the First Response Support Measure.

    Local Authorities and Community Groups and Organisations can apply for funding under the programme.

    Minister Ring told Midwest News he is delighted to be able to reopen the scheme once again.

  • Funding of €855,000 has been allocated today to Mayo County Council under the Local Improvement Scheme for improvement works on private rural roads in the county.

    Under the LIS scheme last year, improvements were carried out on 89 private roads in Mayo.

    The scheme is aimed at laneways and boreens that enable people to access their homes and farms.

    The Minister for Rural & Community Affairs Michael Ring has allocated €855,000 euro for the LIS roads in Mayo, and says he might be in a position to make a further allocation next September.

  • There’s good news this morning for Glencastle National School, Bunnahowen as the Minister for Education has allocated 1.2 million euro to build a special needs unit at the Gaeltacht primary school.

    Minister Michael Ring has confirmed that the unding has been approved to build an extension at the school for an SNA unit.

  • 19,148 pensioners in Mayo will see an increase in their weekly payment from today.

    This was confirmed by Minister Michael Ring who says the state pension will be increased by €5 per week for those on maximum weekly rates, with proportionate increases for those on reduced rates.

    There will also be a €5 increase in the maximum rate of all weekly payments for lone parents, jobseekers, carers, people with disabilities, widows, and people on employment programmes.

  • The 2018 Town & Village Renewal Scheme is opening for applications from today (Friday).

    Nationally , €15 million will be allocated to support rural regeneration projects in towns and villages across the country, and the scheme is aimed at areas with a population of less than 10,000 people.

    Last year, 14 towns and villages in Co Mayo received funding under the scheme.

    Grants were made available for projects such as Ballinrobe Town Hall, Ballycastle Museum, enhancement works in Balla, Ballyhaunis, Claremorris and Breaffy village, the Admiral Browne promenade in Foxford, round tower in Killala and Dark Sky project in Ballycroy.

    The Mayo-based Minister for Rural & Community Development Michael Ring says this is a very important scheme for revitalising smaller rural villages and towns.

  • It’s emerged that a number of hospitals are routinely missing their targets for treating cancer patients within 15 days of diagnosis.

    As a result, hundreds of people were last year forced to wait for chemotherapy, according to figures published in the Irish Independent.

    The worst offender was The Mater Hospital in Dublin where one-in-three cancer patients got delayed treatment last year.

    The National Cancer Control Programme has set a target that 95% of cancer patients should receive IV treatment within 15 days of diagnosis, but at Galway University Hospital, 22% of patients did not receive IV treatment within the 15-day target last year, and this figure was 25% at Portiuncla Hospital in Ballinasloe.

    Mayo and Sligo University Hospitals fared better, with 99% of patients at both hospitals receiving chemotherapy treatment within 15 days of diagnosis.

     

     

  • 25,000 used batteries weighing in at 480kgs have been collected by the students of St Patrick’s National School  in Castlebar over the last number of weeks as they took part in a recycling project with WEE Ireland.

    Today the Big Battery Hunt presentation took place in the school.

    The initiative was undertaken by the school secretary Aoife McIntyre and Liz McManamon was the teacher co-ordinator.

    Ben Walsh is a 5th class student in St Patrick’s who himself added 3,450 used batteries to the collection.

    He told Midwest News today that it's important for the environment that used batteries are disposed of safely.

  • 522 people are waiting on trolleys in hospitals across the country today. 

    According to the INMO, the worst affected is University Hospital Limerick where 68 people are waiting for beds. 

    The second most-overcrowded is University Hospital Galway, where 37 patients are on trolleys.

    There are 16 patients waiting for a bed at Mayo University Hospital, 12 in Sligo and 2 on trolleys at Portiuncla Hospital in Ballinasloe.

     

     

     

     

  • The overcrowding crisis continues at Galway University Hospital, with 43 patients on trolleys today.

    Yesterday there were 50 patients on trolleys at the Galway Hospital, and the full capacity protocol was put in place, with people urged to contact their GP before attending the Emergency Department.

    Today, there are 465 patients on hospital trolleys across the country, according to the Irish Nurses & Midwives Organisation.

    Galway University Hospital is the third most overcrowded with 43 patients waiting for a bed, with 15 people on trolleys at Sligo University Hospital and 4 at Mayo University Hospital.

     

     

  • 47 motor insurance claims were made in Mayo last year, relating to uninsured or untraced drivers.

    The number of claims from Co Mayo was up 7% since 2016 last year and by 52% since 2015.

    The Motor Insurers’ Bureau of Ireland received over 2,700 such claims last year.

    The non-profit organisation was set up to compensate victims of accidents caused by uninsured vehicles.

    The MIBI says that, since 2016, it has witnessed a significant step up in the number of claims they received.

    It's also concerned about fraudulent claims - with 1 in 8 thought to be suspicious. 

  • Despite the Summer season, overcrowding continues at hospitals across the country with 458 people on trolleys today, according to the INMO.

    Galway University Hospital is the second most overcrowded, with 50 patients waiting for admission to a bed.

    The busiest is University Hospital Limerick with 56 patients on trolleys.

    Elsewhere in this region, there are 16 on trolleys at Sligo University Hospital,  4 at Mayo University Hospital and 1 at Portiuncla Hospital.

     

     

     

     

  • There are 649 people waiting on trolleys at hospitals across the country today, according to the latest trolley watch from the Irish Nurses & Midwives Organisation.

    Yesterday, levels reached a new record high of 714.

    Today, there are 28 patients on trolleys at Galway University Hospital, 21 in Sligo, 19 at Mayo University Hospital and 13 at Portiuncla in Ballinasloe.

    The worst affected is University Hospital Limerick where there are 58 people waiting for a hospital bed.

    The HSE has announced that non-urgent elective surgery is being cancelled at hospitals across the county, as they try and tackle the backlog of patients on trolleys.

    A spokesperson for the Saolta Hospital Group told Midwest News today that while non-urgent electives are cancelled at Mayo University Hospital, some urgent elective procedures are proceeding.

    The spokesperson said patients have been contacted directly in relation to their procedures.

    At Galway University Hospital , some non-urgent surgeries scheduled for today have been deferred.

    Affected patients are being contacted directly, so those who have not heard from their hospital should attend for their appointment as scheduled.

  • A 78-year old man will be sentenced next month for raping his daughter at the family home in Co Mayo.

    The man, who cannot be named to protect the victim’s identity, pleaded guilty at the Central Criminal Court to five sample charges of carnal knowledge without the girl’s consent on dates between July 1973 and November 1974.

    The court heard the woman was regularly raped while she was aged between 9 and 12, while her mother was out at work.

    In her victim impact statement, the now 54-year old woman referred to her father as a predator.

    Mr Justice Patrick McCarthy remanded the man in continuing custody, and adjourned sentencing to June 18th next.

     

  • A Kerry based company that controls and eradicates Japanese Knotweed is expected to submit a planning application to Mayo county council before the end of this month to develop a facility to process the invasive plant species.

    Representatives from the company held an information evening in Ballyhaunis on Friday where they outlined their plans for the soil recovery facility, to be located at a disused quarry at Drimbane, just off the Claremorris road.

    The processing centre is expected to create 16 jobs.

    The company had initially planned to locate the facility at a disused quarry in Claremorris  but that proposal was abandoned following local objections.

    Speaking to Midwest News today the owner of the proposed plant said that he intends to submit a planning application to Mayo county council in the next ten days.

    He said the new plant would be located close to Western Proteins, and following Friday’s public meeting he believes there are no substantial objections to his proposal locally.

    He declined to be interviewed.

     

  • The Achill Dolphins are here to stay.

    It was revealed recently that the same family of dolphins have been following an Achill fishing boat for more than two years as the local crew went about their business in the waters off the coast.

    They were waiting for the boat every time it went to sea and would play around it until it returned to Purteen Harbour with its catch.

    However, fishermen can be very superstitious and the story remained untold until recently.

    The recent spell of bad weather meant that the fishing boat was tied up for two weeks and some experienced fishermen reckoned that the dolphins would no longer be present in the bay when fishing resumed, now that the secret was out.

    Nothing could be further from the truth! When the fishing boat returned to the water on Monday morning, the dolphins were in situ much to the delight of the local aquarium and its CEO, Terence Dever.

    “We’re very proud of the amazing waters we have around Achill and were overjoyed when news came through this morning that the dolphins are here to stay. They obviously know what hospitable people we are.

    “We have thousands of people coming to see the wonderful aquarium we have here and now we’ll be able to tell visitors about our resident dolphin family as well,” he added.

  • Dingle might be famous for Fungi the dolphin, but Achill Island can now boast not one but two friendly dolphins.

    A local fisherman has revealed that the same two dolphins have followed his boat out to Achill Head every day for the past three years, and can be seen playing in the waters around his vessel.

    In recent days, the fisherman has told staff at the Achill Experience Aquarium & Visitor Centre about his friends in the dolphin family, and staff expect huge interest from the public in the coming weeks and months.

    Achill Aquarium is celebrating its second birthday today and has already welcomed some 40,000 visitors.

    On Saturday next, Minister Michael Ring will officially open phase two of the Aquarium and Visitor Centre.