Hospital conditions ‘chaotic’ – 24 on trolleys in Portiuncula

Alarming ‘trolley numbers’ in hospitals nationwide have led to calls for “an extraordinary response from the Government and the HSE”.

According to the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO), 838 patients were on trolleys in Irish hospitals on Wednesday.

Locally, there were 24 patients on trolleys in Portiuncula Hospital in Ballinasloe – 9 in the emergency department, and a further 15 in wards. In Sligo University Hospital, there were 65 people on trolleys or chairs.

Sligo-Leitrim TD Marian Harkin called on the Government to recall the Dáil immediately to deal with the situation. The Deputy also wants Health Minister Stephen Donnelly to immediately enlist private hospitals to help alleviate pressure on the public system.

INMO General Secretary Phil Ní Sheaghdha said: “We again repeat our call for the current approach of telling people just to avoid hospitals to cease. The focus should be on providing supplemented emergency supports until the end of February.

“It is time for the Government to call this what it clearly is – an out and out crisis. A crisis warrants an extraordinary response from Government and the HSE”.

Describing conditions in hospitals as “chaotic”, Ms. Ní Sheaghdha said: “Our members are treating patients in the most undignified conditions. This is not the type of care they should be providing in a country that has the resources to provide additional capacity and support”.