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Dublin: 13 °C Tuesday 10 December, 2019
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These are the most overcrowded hospitals in the country

There’s been an improvement in Dublin, but things are getting worse in other counties.

Image: Shutterstock/Samrith Na Lumpoon

OVERCROWDING IN IRISH hospitals increased in the first three months of the year, but decreased in April.

The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) has released the figures ahead of its annual conference, which begins in Wexford today.

Some 36,043 patients waited on trolleys for an inpatient bed in the first four months of 2017. This was the highest figure recorded for this four-month period since records began, and a 1% increase on 2016 figures.

Some 7,199 patients spent time on trolleys while awaiting inpatient beds last month. This figure represents a 12% decrease compared with April 2016.

The INMO noted this year’s figures to date continue to show a significant drop in overcrowding in hospitals in Dublin, while hospitals outside the capital continue to see significant increases in levels of overcrowding.

The most overcrowded hospitals in April were:

  • Cork University Hospital – 658 people on trolleys
  • University Hospital Limerick – 649 people on trolleys
  • South Tipperary General Hospital – 493 people on trolleys
  • Mater Hospital, Dublin – 437 people on trolleys
  • University Hospital Galway – 410 people on trolleys

Ongoing overcrowding problems in hospitals nationwide will be one of the issues discussed at the INMO’s three-day conference.

More staff and beds needed 

Speaking about the issue, INMO General Secretary Liam Doran said: “These latest statistics confirm that our health services continue to be too small to adequately, and safely, meet the demands being placed upon it. The shortage of beds in acute hospitals and step down facilities remains a real problem in this on-going crisis.

Additional services, either in terms of acute beds, step-down beds and/or community intervention teams are dependent on there being additional nursing staff. It remains the stark reality that without nurses and midwives we cannot meet current demand let alone in the future.

A meeting of the Emergency Department Taskforce is due to take place on Monday, 8 May.

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Órla Ryan

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