University Hospital Limerick’s urgent public appeal over ‘high volumes’ in emergency department

Fintan Walsh, Health Correspondent

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Fintan Walsh, Health Correspondent

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fintan.walsh@limerickleader.ie

University Hospital Limerick’s urgent public appeal over ‘high volumes’ in emergency department

THE UL Hospitals Group has urged people to consider all their care options before presenting to the emergency department, which is enduring “high volumes” of patients this Wednesday. 

According to figures published by the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation, there were 60 patients on emergency department trolleys and on trolleys or beds in the wards at UHL this Wednesday. 

In a statement, UL Hospitals Group said: “The hospital is currently managing high volumes of patients including significant volumes of frail elderly patients with chronic conditions and complex care needs.

“UL Hospitals apologises for any distress or inconvenience caused to patients or their loved ones who have experienced long wait times in the ED at UHL, and we would like to reassure patients and their families that we are working to alleviate the situation. Members of the public are urged to consider all their care options at this time and not to attend the Emergency Department unless necessary.

“Injury Units in St John’s, Ennis and Nenagh hospitals are open for appropriate injuries. Injury Units are open in Ennis and Nenagh Hospitals from 8am to 8pm, Monday to Sunday and 8am to 6pm Monday to Friday at St. John's Hospital,” it stated. 

The spokesperson added: "Others with a less serious illness can be treated by their GP or out of hours GP service where their GP can refer them to an Assessment Unit if required.

“However, if you are seriously injured or ill or are worried your life is at risk the ED will assess and treat you as a priority.”

In this weekend’s Limerick Leader, a number of TDs have hit out at the “abject failure” of Minister for Health Simon Harris’ handling of the trolley crisis at UHL.