In Emergency Departments across the country today, 585 patients are awaiting admission – more than double the official HSE’s policy of having no more than 236 people on trolleys at any one time.
Today, 24 patients are awaiting admission at Letterkenny University Hospital, 11 of whom are on trolleys.
On Monday a record-breaking amount of patients were left waiting on trolleys and along wards as the INMO revealed that 715 patients were awaiting admission on their Trolley Watch report.
Speaking on Prime Time last night, Health Minister Simon Harris says that due to the recent adverse weather, a backlog of patients contributed to the record-breaking figure.
Deputy Harris says that the goal is to get the number of patients awaiting admission to zero, and has a “road map” for how to achieve this over the next decade, including the introduction of 2,600 extra beds.
He says that another way to tackle the trolley crisis is to look at modular builds (prefabs) in the interim before new permanent wings/wards can be constructed. The Department will also be working closely with GPs, to see if patients can be kept from hospitals with community-led care. More home care is also on the cards, Harris says.
Harris also highlighted that an extra 15,000 patients turned up at Irish hospitals at the beginning of 2018 compared to 2017, exacerbating the crisis.
Ahead of the Still Waiting campaign’s protest against the inadequate facilities at LUH, Donegal Daily contacted the Department of Health, the HSE, and Saolta to ask for clarification on the ED Taskforce’s work, specifically in relation to LUH, and for comment on the overcrowding situation. None of them provided a response to our queries.
To watch the full interview, you can catch it on the RTÉ Player.Tags: