An ambulance at the Emergency Department at St Vincent's University Hospital. Mark Stedman

Over 3,000 people attended emergency departments in Ireland yesterday

The HSE is encouraging people to go to their GP where possible, instead of attending hospitals.

THE HSE HAS said that over 3,000 people visited Emergency Departments across the country yesterday.

Of that total, around 812 people were admitted from the Emergency Department to the hospital for further treatment.

By 8am this morning, there were 171 patients who were waiting for admission to a hospital bed, by 2pm, the number was at 149.

Each winter, Emergency Departments become crowded each winter, which coincides with the “flu season”. Health services are encouraging people to attend their pharmacist or GP where possible, to help reduce demand on Emergency Departments.

“Our hospital will get busier over the coming weeks,” the HSE said today.

“EDs expect to see more patients attending with more complicated illnesses. As always, the sickest patients and patients requiring urgent treatment and care will be prioritised.”

Dr Vida Hamilton, HSE National Clinical Advisor of Acute Hospitals, told previously that the best thing to do to recover from a cold or flu is rest, to keep your fluids up and to help reduce your symptoms if you can.

If you’re feeling unwell but are able to self-mobilise, attend a GP or ask for a pharmacist for guidance.

“Go to the Emergency Department,” Hamilton said, “if there’s a change in organ function: new onset confusion or agitation, breathing so fast that you’re not able to complete a sentence, if you can’t sit up at all without feeling dizzy, or if you haven’t peed in 12 hours and have no desire to pee.”

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