Overcrowding at Limerick hospital hits second highest national level

61 PATIENTS TREATED ON TROLLEYS

Fintan Walsh

Reporter:

Fintan Walsh

Email:

fintan.walsh@limerickleader.ie

Overcrowding at Limerick hospital second highest in Ireland since records began

Site of new emergency department Picture: Michael Cowhey

OVERCROWDING at University Hospital Limerick was close to reaching another national record, with 61 patients being treated on trolleys this Tuesday morning, new figures show. 

According to figures published by the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation, there were 30 patients being treated on A&E trolleys, and 31 patients on additional beds, trolleys or chairs in the Dooradoyle wards. 

This is the second highest level of overcrowding to ever be recorded by the union since records began in 2006, with UHL holding the current national record, with 66 patients on trolleys. 

This level of overcrowding has been recorded at UHL on two occasions; the first instance was on November 8, 2016, and the second occurred on January 5. 

Yesterday, UHL had the highest rate of overcrowding in the country, with 46 patients being treated on trolleys. 

A new “state-of-the-art” emergency department is due to open its doors sometime in 2017, though the open date remains unclear. According to a spokesperson for the UL Hospitals Group, it is hoped that the new facility in Dooradoyle will open in May, subject to funding and a successful recruitment campaign.