“Out-of-control” hospital trolley figures have been slammed by the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO), as 603 patients are without a bed in Irish hospitals today.
It is the highest number of patients on trolleys seen in two years since February 4th 2020, prior to the arrival of the Covid-19 pandemic.
INMO general secretary Phil Ní Sheaghdha said the union is calling for urgent action amid the “dangerous” numbers.
“The number of patients without a bed in our hospitals today is simply unacceptable and should not be tolerated. The fact that we have over 600 patients on trolleys while Covid is still a very real feature in our hospitals is inexcusable," she said.
“Since the first week of January in particular, the INMO has been calling for urgent action to ensure that trolley numbers do not rise to unsustainable levels, yet here we are barely the second week of February with a dangerous amount of patients on trolleys.
We are calling for the Emergency Department taskforce to be convened and for emergency measures to be deployed in the areas worst-hit
“This issue is not just confined to one part of the country, we are seeing huge amounts of patients waiting on trolleys in University Hospital Limerick (71), Cork University Hospital (58), University Hospital Galway (46), Letterkenny University Hospital (44), St Luke’s Kilkenny (44), Sligo University Hospital (43), St Vincent’s University Hospital (37) and Portiuncula Hospital (24).
“We are calling for the Emergency Department taskforce to be convened and for emergency measures to be deployed in the areas worst-hit.
“We cannot allow the health service to revert to form and allow pre-Covid levels of overcrowding to become the norm once again in our hospitals. Patients and nursing staff deserve better.
“If non-emergency services need to be curtailed in order to allow the HSE and hospital groups to get a handle on out of control trolley figures, then that must be done.
“It is not acceptable to our members to allow overcrowding become an out-of-control problem once again.”