THERE are 46 patients on trolleys at University Hospital Limerick this Tuesday, according to figures provided by the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation.
The figure – spread across trolleys in the emergency department and on wards – is an increase from Monday’s 39, and is the highest in the country for the second consecutive day.
The overcrowding figure has been consistently high at UHL but remains some way short of January’s peak of 66 – yet the hospital is regularly the most overcrowded in the country.
This high level of patients on trolleys comes after the announcement that 36 beds were to be opened between St John’s Hospital, Ennis and Nenagh hospitals.
Senator Kieran O’Donnell has said that these extra beds will “help alleviate the A&E crisis" present at UHL.
A “state-of-the-art” emergency department is expected to open this May, subject to a successful recruitment campaign and HSE funding.
It will be three times the size of the current facility, and is expected to improve the patient and staff experience at the hospital, a spokesperson for the UL Hospitals Group has said.