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Campaign for Childrens’ Hospital in Cork gets boost from beauty queen and rugby star

A beauty queen has teamed up with a rugby star to support a ‘buy a brick’ campaign in aid of a new children’s hospital in Cork.

iss Cork Saoirse O’Shaughnessy and Munster and Ireland legend Peter O’Mahony celebrated with children at Cork University Hospital after council planners gave the project the green light.

An initiative launched by the hospital’s fundraising arm, CUH Charity, will give the public the chance to have their names on the wall – with funds being used to furnish the five-storey, state-of-the-art facility.

The new paediatric unit will have sleeping areas for parents or carers in each of its 82 rooms.

“There will be room for parents to be with their children at times of need, so

it is going to be an incredible facility,” said Peter O’Mahony.

“It is unbelievably important for Cork, the Munster region and Ireland in general.”

The project is also close to the heart of Miss Ireland 2022 finalist Saoirse, 22, a healthcare assistant in CUH’s emergency department.

“It is so much better for a child from Cork to be treated in Cork, financially and emotionally, rather than go all the way to Dublin,” she

said.

“Every child deserves to have the best childhood. You never know when you are going to need the services provided by the new hospital.”

When completed, the unit will also include child friendly operating theatres, children’s MRI as well as specialist rooms for oncology and high-dependency patients.

Marie Watson, a Clinical Nurse Manager at CUH’s children’s unit said the planning green light is “hugely significant”.

“It is a huge step on the right road to developing the children’s unit into what the kids of Cork and Munster deserve, which is going to be

second-to-none accommodation, matching what they have already – second-to-none nursing and medical care,” she added.

Claire Concannon of CUH Charity said the new extension, along with the current construction of the children’s emergency department, will “lead to a smoother journey for children and their families though our healthcare system”.

The campaign has so far raised more than €37,000 in donations from the public. The bricks cost €50 each, and can be bought at: www.cuh.buyabrick.ie.

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