Letterkenny University Hospital has extended its limits on face to face outpatient clinics due to Covid-19.
For the next fortnight, only time-dependent and critical day case and inpatient procedures are taking place.
In early January all but very urgent and time critical inpatient and day surgery was curtailed in Letterkenny University Hospital.
A statement from the Saolta healthcare group said that, in light of very significant pressure in the hospital caused by COVID-19 and high community infection rates, current restrictions must be continued to ensure patient safety and wellbeing.
The deferrals are in place for a further two week period from today, Monday 25th January, and will be kept under review.
Outpatient clinics will also be restricted however some of these will take place virtually unless it is absolutely necessary for patients to be seen.
Seán Murphy, Hospital Manager at LUH said, “We understand that these deferrals may be disappointing and frustrating for patients but this is an important measure to enable the hospital to maintain critical and emergency services.
“There are many very sick people in Letterkenny University Hospital and the impact of a surge of cases in the community will be reflected in hospital admissions over the coming days.
“As of 8pm yesterday evening there were 102 patients in LUH with COVID-19 and five patients requiring Critical Care.
“A small number of procedures where patients require time critical or urgent cancer care will proceed as scheduled. Patients will be notified directly if their appointment is being deferred, we apologise for the inconvenience this may cause, please bear with us as we all hold firm.
“Visiting restrictions remain in place at the hospital. Members of the public should not visit the hospital except on compassionate grounds and these visits must be arranged in advance with the nurse manager on the ward.
“Letterkenny University Hospital continues to be extremely busy, the public are reminded to only attend the Emergency Department in case of emergencies. Please contact your GP during normal surgery hours or the NoWDOC GP out of hours service if your health problem is not an emergency.”