Management at Letterkenny University Hospital have confirmed that full capacity protocol was deployed more than 100 times in 2016.
In response to a parliamentary question by Donegal Sinn Féin Senator Pádraig Mac Lochlainn, management at the hospital confirmed that by late December, they had recorded 103 occasions when the protocol was initiated.
Senator Mac Lochlainn said:
“These figures are a damning indictment of this Government. The full capacity protocol is supposed to be deployed or initiated as a last resort. The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) have repeatedly conveyed their strong opposition to the use of the protocol. They have real concerns that the full capacity protocol can increase overcrowding in wards and with this, the risk of infections.
“There is also the reality that operations and procedures for people on hospital waiting lists are being further delayed. You are robbing Peter to pay Paul.
“The INMO had warned that rather than a last resort for the HSE, it would become the first option and these figures vindicate their concerns”.
“Despite the repeated use of this protocol, the numbers on trolleys across this State are at record levels today of over 600 people.
“The trolleys crisis in our hospitals including Letterkenny University Hospital is the result of years of chronic under-investment in our health service by Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael led governments. The solution to the crisis is an urgent level of investment in beds, nurses and doctors that reverses the years of neglect. This means investment in home care packages, community hospitals, nursing units as well as our major hospitals like Letterkenny. It’s a whole of service response to a whole of service crisis.
Sinn Féin have demonstrated in our alternative budget proposals how this can be done. Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil have chosen otherwise and they must answer to the people why”.Tags: