25.02.2014 Strategic Plan 2014-2016: Building an Independent Future

Message from the Board Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, UL Hospitals

The production of a strategic plan is a significant undertaking for any organisation, as it clarifies its vision, values and mission. It also sets targets and indicates what must be done to achieve them. Having a robust plan is all the more important when the enterprise is new or undergoing transformation. At such a crucial time, an organisation must not only know what it intends to do and how to do it, but must also communicate this to others. With these thoughts in mind, we introduce the first Strategic Plan for UL Hospitals, to cover the period from 2014 to 2016.

This plan signals the start of an exciting journey for UL Hospitals, with the ultimate aim of providing the best possible patient care across all clinical sites. Our clear vision is for UL Hospitals to be among the top three Irish hospitals by 2018. Judgement on whether or not we have realised our vision by 2018 will be made by those we serve.

We acknowledge the many significant difficulties involved in developing and improving services during tough economic times. In spite of these, we hereby state our commitment to transforming the delivery of hospital services for our community during the years ahead. UL Hospitals was one of the first new hospital groups to be established in Ireland, in 2012, and we have already made significant progress. Patient access to our services has improved, with the development of medical and surgical assessment units. We have improved our treatment of patients with cancer, with cardiovascular disease and those who are elderly. A new governance structure with an interim Hospitals Board and devolved authority to four Clinical Directorates across six sites is a huge advance. We continue to upgrade our physical infrastructure with a magnificent new Critical Care Block at UHL and with additional facilities on the way, to include new operating theatres, specialty therapy facilities, extra ward accommodation, a new Emergency Department and a Clinical Education & Research Centre in partnership with the University of Limerick.

A strategic plan helps us to focus on the priority areas that most need attention and that are likely to provide the greatest dividend to standards of clinical care. The creation of a single hospital across multiple sites, the implementation of national standards for safer better healthcare, the improvement of our ICT systems and the development of education and research have rightly been identified as the key areas on which we will focus. It is confidently expected that progress in these areas will lead to substantial improvements in other areas that are not singled out for specific attention in this plan.

Having a map, a destination and a plan is just the first step in our journey. While the Plan identifies 64 specific actions that we will take to achieve our strategic priorities, our success will depend on the extent to which each and every employee at UL Hospitals embraces the plan and becomes part of its implementation.

The purpose of our work is to care for, to treat and, when possible, to cure our patients and to do so in the most caring, respectful and professional way possible. This Strategic Plan will guide us over the next three years as we grow and improve UL Hospitals for our patients and prepare for the attainment of Trust status. It will be our reference for everything we undertake during the next three years.

Professor Niall O'Higgins
UL Hospitals Interim Board

Ms Ann Doherty
UL Hospitals