News Round


Frontline healthcare workers to receive Covid-19 booster vaccine

The Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly, has announced that the Covid-19 booster vaccination programme will be extended to all frontline healthcare workers. 

It comes after a recommendation from the National Immunisation Advisory Committee (Niac)

A booster dose of an mRNA vaccine will be offered to all frontline healthcare workers who have completed their primary course with any Covid-19 vaccine. The booster vaccine should be given about six months following completion of the primary vaccination course.

Those who have had a laboratory confirmed Covid-19 infection after a completed primary vaccine course should defer the booster vaccination for at least six months following the infection.

Further information on Covid-19 boost vaccines for health professionals can be found on the HSE website.

Minister for Health publishes revised Implementation Plan for the National Maternity Strategy

The Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly has published the revised Implementation Plan for the National Maternity Strategy - Creating a Better Future Together 2016-2026.

The plan provides a roadmap of the actions to ensure the National Maternity Strategy is implemented within the remaining timeframe.

A revision of the original Implementation Plan comes following a recommendation from HIQA in its 2020 report into maternity services and due to changeS that have occurred since the launch of the Strategy, by the National Women and Infants Health Programme (NWIHP).

The Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly TD, has welcomed the publication of the revised Implementation Plan. “As Minister, in line with the commitments made in the Programme for Government to improve women’s health outcomes, I want to ensure the ongoing development of safe, high quality, standardised maternity services which support better health outcomes for women,” he said.

For more on the revised Implementation Plan, please click here.

New National Clinical Effectiveness Guideline for COPD published

A new National Clinical Effectiveness Guideline to assist healthcare professionals caring for people with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) has been published.

The guideline was developed by a multidisciplinary Guideline Development Group, led by Dr Desmond Murphy and supported by the HSE National Clinical Programme for Respiratory Medicine.

COPD is the most prevalent respiratory disease in adults and is a major cause of morbidity and mortality. Each year in Ireland, over 15,000 patients are admitted to hospital with COPD and a least 1,500 die from the disease.

The new guideline will ensure that COPD patients receive consistent and standardised care, based on the best available evidence.

In welcoming the publication of the guideline, Chief Nursing Officer, Rachel Kenna said: “The development of the NCEC National Clinical Guideline on the Management of COPD is an important support to progress patient care for those affected by COPD in Ireland. This is important as we seek to progress health service reforms and innovative approaches such as the work done on the Community Virtual Ward (CVW) initiative. This model of care delivers an integrated approach to care of patients with chronic diseases such as COPD leading to improved patient outcomes.”

The full publication on the Management of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is available to read here.

US President Joe Biden congratulates new Roscommon hospice

US President Joe Biden has congratulated the team at Mayo Roscommon Hospice Foundation on the opening of its new palliative care centre in Roscommon.

In a video message, President Biden paid tribute to the centre and thanked the foundation for honouring his late son Beau who died from brain cancer in 2017.

He said: “The fact that you have etched Beau’s name and memory into the tapestry of this hospice is something my family and I, and his children in particular, will never, ever forget”.

During a visit to Ireland in September 2017, President Biden was invited to turn the first sod by his cousin Laurita Blewitt, a fundraising manager for the Mayo Roscommon Hospice Foundation. He described it as a “deeply moving experience”.

In his message, President Biden said: “Love, selflessness, compassion – that’s what hospice represents. A place where dignity, empathy and support are shown to all”.

“I know this special place will bring comfort to the proud people of Counties Mayo and Roscommon.”

The Mayo Roscommon Hospice Foundation was founded in 1993 and provides palliative care services to people with life-limiting illnesses and their families.

The new eight-bed inpatient unit was officially opened earlier this month by the Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly.

Speaking at the opening, Minister Donnelly paid tribute to the fundraising efforts and said: “This building and the people it will serve is a wonderful testament to the local community’s generosity and goodwill.”

You can view President Biden’s full video message here.

New 24-hour paediatric care unit opens at Tallaght University Hospital

A new 24-hour emergency and outpatient paediatric unit has opened at Children’s Health Ireland (CHI) in Tallaght University Hospital.

The new unit includes a paediatric outpatient facility, a designated area for minor injuries and procedures, 16 single examination and treatment rooms, triage rooms and a radiology department. It aims to facilitate 17,000 outpatient appointments and 30,000 emergency care appointments a year.

An outpatient department with 13 consultation rooms is open weekdays for appointments in general and specialist paediatrics, including neurodisability and orthopaedics. A new medical forensic examination suite and clinic for child sexual assault counselling and therapy services has also opened.

A new area has also been introduced to allow Advanced Nurse Practitioners to treat children without being admitted.

The care unit, designed and built for children, young people and their families, is one of two satellite centres that form part of the new National Children's Hospital. The other centre at Connolly Hospital in Blanchardstown was opened in 2019 and led to a 65pc reduction in waiting lists for general paediatric services.

Speaking at the official opening, Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly said the new facility “will have a significant impact on the ongoing transformation of paediatric services in Ireland, helping to reduce wait times while delivering care in an appropriate setting, as close to home as possible”. 

Three Irish professors selected as Fellows of the American Academy of Nursing

Three Irish professors have been selected as Fellows of the American Academy of Nursing which represents nursing’s most accomplished leaders in policy, research, administration, practice, and academia.

Among the 225 who were inducted into the 2021 Class of Fellows at a ceremony in Washington DC, were Imelda Coyne, PhD, MA, RN, FTCD, FEANS (Trinity College Dublin); Thomas Kearns, EdD, FFNMRCSI, Med, BNS, RNT, RGN, RPN (RCSI University of Medicine and Health Sciences); and John Wells, PhD, MSc (Waterford Institute of Technology).

The American Academy of Nursing consists of over 2,800 Fellows from around the world and aims to serve the public and the nursing profession by advancing health policy through the generation, synthesis and dissemination of nursing knowledge.

Frontline nurse in the US wins lottery on day she retires

A nurse who worked through the pandemic won a small fortune on a scratchcard on the day of her retirement.

The woman, from Kentucky in the USA, hit the $200,000 jackpot as she celebrated the end of 36 years in nursing.

The now retired nurse, who chose to remain anonymous, bought a $10 ticket at her local shop, Kentucky State Lottery officials said.

The day she retired, she discovered she had matched the number 20 on the last row. She then scratched off the prize amount below the number, revealing the game’s $200,000 top prize.

“It was unbelievable,” she said in a statement. “I had just retired that day. I saw this as a sign it was meant to be for me to quit working.”

According to lottery officials, the retired Kentucky nurse cashed in last week and received a cheque for $142,000 after taxes.

The woman is the latest nurse to collect winnings in lotteries across the States during the pandemic.

A nurse at a retirement home in North Carolina won a $1 million prize in January, while another frontline nurse in the same state won $200,000 in September.

Some States introduced lotteries for citizens who were double-vaccinated, as part of the vaccine drive. A 24-year-old Maryland nurse won $40,000 from the state's vaccination lottery in June. Nurses from Michigan, Missouri and West Virginia have also won state vaccine lotteries this year.

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In this issue
2022 Annual Renewal Underway with 15,000 Renewals Already Complete
Students from NUIG and UL win NMBI’s Annual Student Midwife Debate
Nurses and Midwives Encouraged to Apply to Join the Board of NMBI
Registered Practising Midwives Invited to Join NMBI’s Fitness to Practise Committee
Nurses and Midwives Show Continued Resolve During New Wave of Covid-19
HSE National Immunisation Office: Covid-19 Vaccine Bulletin
News Round
NMBI CEO, Sheila McClelland takes part in MTU Student Video About Their Pandemic Experiences
Board Profile: Dr Louise Kavanagh McBride (NMBI Vice President)
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