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Ballygarry first hotel to be accredited with COVID-19 Safety Charter for Hospitality

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ACCREDITATION: Staff at Ballygarry House, the first hotel to be accredited with COVID-19 Safety Charter for Hospitality, pictured as they returned to work last week.

 

After a 15-week rest, Ballygarry House returns to a new dawn after becoming the first hotel in Ireland to be accredited with the Fáilte Ireland COVID-19 Safety Charter for Hospitality.

 

The COVID-19 Safety Charter is a Government-endorsed initiative that ensures tourism and hospitality businesses are well-able to adhere to the specific guidelines outlined for reopening.

Bringing 135 staff back to work, Padraig McGillicuddy, Hotel Proprietor, is delighted to reopen Ballygarry House’s doors to guests and welcome them to the establishment that has been 62 years in the McGillicuddy family.

“This year is the year of the Irish, all business will be home grown and it’s going to be largely based on a quality product with value for money,” Padraig said.

“We got plenty of work done on creating a message to satisfy consumer confidence through social media videos. We launched a fun reopening video and we have had over 100,000 views which is a remarkable result. We also launched a video endorsing the measures we are taking to reassure the guests and instil consumer confidence in our COVID practices. Simple things like replacing the traditional Irish handshake with our ‘hand on our heart’ gesture, a symbol of our love of all things hospitality.”

He explained that this will be an exceptional year where the business will do well to breakeven, but the priority has been to keep their team together, trade out of it and look forward to a really prosperous year in 2021.
“The cost of the pandemic in lost revenue to the hotel is €4,000,000 some of which can be recovered but it will be a challenge. Thankfully we entered this shutdown in a very strong position so we’ll rise stronger than ever from it.”

With Kerry Tourism generating over €420 million for Kerry which is the main form of employment in the county, Padraig is keen to get Ballygarry back to previous trading levels. However, he stressed the necessity and importance of the lockdown and how it helped slow down the speed of the virus in and around Kerry and Ireland. Ballygarry itself has retrained all staff, re-written its hotel policies and standard operating procedures in line with and beyond Government guidelines so they can assure their guests and staff that safety is the number one priority.

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New Patient Advocacy Service offering support to Kerry people

A newly established Patient Advocacy Service is offering support to people in the Kerry area who want to make a complaint about the care they have received in a public hospital. The service provides free, independent and confidential information and support to people making a formal complaint about their care in a Health Service Executive […]

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A newly established Patient Advocacy Service is offering support to people in the Kerry area who want to make a complaint about the care they have received in a public hospital.

The service provides free, independent and confidential information and support to people making a formal complaint about their care in a Health Service Executive (HSE) funded public acute hospital.

People in the Kerry area looking for support can contact the Patient Advocacy Service confidential helpline on 0818 293003 to speak to a trained advocate who will help them to get information on the HSE’s complaints investigation process, called ‘Your Service, Your Say’.

The professionally trained independent advocate will support and empower the person making the complaint, with the aim of highlighting their views and concerns.

The advocate will explain to the person how to write a formal complaint and what to include in it. They will also help the person prepare for meetings with the HSE about their complaint, and they will help the person explore their options following a response from the HSE to their complaint.

“Until now, people in Kerry and across Ireland who experienced difficulties in the Irish health service often felt there was nowhere for them to turn,” Service Manager for the Patient Advocacy Service, Claire Lehane, said.

GUIDANCE

“The newly established Patient Advocacy Service offers patients the guidance and information they need to make a complaint when they are unhappy with the care they receive. It is free, independent and run by our professionally trained patient advocates who will use their compassion and knowledge to guide people through the HSE complaints process.”

The helpline is open Monday to Friday from 10am until 4pm, including lunchtimes. You can also email info@patientadvocacyservice.ie or for more information see patientadvocacyservice.ie.

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New Kerry Dublin flight takes off

By Sean Moriarty The Kerry-Dublin air route returned to the skies for the first time in nearly seven weeks today (Wednesday). Budget airline Ryanair has taken over the route following the collapse of Stobart Air on June 12. At around 1pm, one of Ryanair’s Boeing 737-800 aircraft landed at the airport after completing its 50 minute […]

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By Sean Moriarty

The Kerry-Dublin air route returned to the skies for the first time in nearly seven weeks today (Wednesday).

Budget airline Ryanair has taken over the route following the collapse of Stobart Air on June 12.

At around 1pm, one of Ryanair’s Boeing 737-800 aircraft landed at the airport after completing its 50 minute journey for Dublin.

Less than 25 minutes later it was back in the sky again for its return journey to the capital.

The flight will operate once a day until September 1 when the frequency will increase to twice daily.

“We are happy to report a positive start to the service which has been absent since early June,” the airport’s CEO John Mulhern told the Killarney Advertiser. “Ryanair intends to operate the route once a day until the end of August and has committed to restoring a twice-daily service from September.”

The route is operated on a commercial basis by Ryanair. Since 2011, Aer Lingus, through its subsidiary Aer Lingus Regional or its partners Aer Arran and Stobart Air operated the flight as a Government support Public Service Obligation (PSO). Previously, between 2008 and 2011 Ryanair operated the route on a commercial basis but withdrew at short notice as it could not make it profitable.

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