Our acute cardiology unit (ACU) cares for patients with cardiovascular (heart and blood vessel) and endocrine (hormone) diseases. 

Our service

Our ACU is made up of a 12-bed coronary care unit, a 31-bed cardiology/endocrine ward (called the Sacred Heart ward) and a cardiac catheterisation lab. The ACU in our hospital is a national centre for care for people with cardiovascular disease. 

The ACU cares for patients with cardiovascular diseases such as: 

  • Ischaemic heart disease (heart problems caused by narrowed heart arteries)
  • Arrhythmias (abnormal heart rhythms) 
  • Heart failure  
  • Valve disease 
  • Adult congenital heart disease 

We also provide care for people who are waiting for heart transplants. 

Once discharged from the ACU, patients are enrolled in cardiac rehabilitation which is located on the hospital campus on Eccles Street. Read more about our cardiac rehabilitation service here. 

Nurse Specialist Services linked with the ACU

There are a number of nurse specialist services linked with the ACU. These services provide special care for patients with conditions such as:  

  • Heart failure 
  • Chest pain 
  • Adult congenital heart disease 
  • Sudden cardiac death screening 
  • Arrhythmia 
  • Transcatheter aortic valve replacement 

Cardiovascular testing

Patients with cardiovascular disease may be given some of the following test through the ACU:

  • Electrocardiogram (ECG) 
  • Echocardiogram 
  • Transoesophageal echocardiogram
  • Exercise stress test

Chest pain clinic

The chest pain clinic offers specialist assessment for patients who attend their GP with chest pain. We aim to investigate patients quickly so we can tell them if their chest pain is heart related or not. The clinic is run by a registered advanced nurse practitioner (RANP). It is supported by consultant cardiologist Dr Hugh McCann and by cardiac physiologists who perform many of the cardiac tests. 


The nursing teams within the ACU are highly skilled and educated. There is a focus on continuing education, with monthly educational updates available for nursing staff, as well as mandatory training and advanced cardiac life support courses. Every year, we run the postgraduate diploma in cardiovascular nursing in partnership with University College Dublin and St Vincent’s University Hospital.


Patients are referred to us from other hospitals around the country through direct contact with the cardiology team. They can also be referred by GPs or through the Emergency Department. 

GP referrals to the chest pain clinic can be made by a GP contacting the RANP on 087 278 8208 or (01) 860 7036. Non-urgent referrals to the chest pain clinic can be made by post.  

Related services

Our consultants