Admin error in Limerick's St John's Hospital doubles waiting list figures

Fintan Walsh

Reporter:

Fintan Walsh

UL Hospitals confirmed an admin error caused a pain relief outpatient waiting list to double at St John’s Hospital

UL Hospitals confirmed an admin error caused a pain relief outpatient waiting list to double at St John’s Hospital

WHILE officially numbers on a waiting list at St John’s Hospital in Limerick more than doubled in a month, the Limerick Leader confirmed this week that this was due to a administrative blunder.

In April, there were 365 patients waiting for pain relief appointments, according to new monthly figures published by the National Treatment Purchase Fund. This rose to 837 in the space of a month.

When the Leader questioned UL Hospitals Group about this large increase, a spokesperson responded: “An administrative error occurred in the reporting of the St. John’s Hospital Outpatient waiting list to 31st May where a review waiting list was incorrectly included in the waiting list return. This has now been corrected and will be reflected in the new figures reported to 30th June.”

The number of patients waiting for an appointment and treatment in Limerick hospitals has reached another all-time high, the monthly report showed.

According to the National Treatment Purchase Fund figures for May, there were 43,641 outpatients and inpatients on a waiting list at University Hospital Limerick, Croom Orthopaedic Hospital and St John’s. 

This total figure includes the incorrect pain relief waiting list figure that has been published in the report.

While the number of inpatients across the three hospitals marginally increased to 3,984 patients—an increase of 11 people—there were 39,657 outpatients on a waiting list, a hike of 401 people. UHL had a slight increase of 83 outpatients, with 31,117 on a waiting list, while Croom saw a drop of 103 outpatients with 6,952 on a waiting list for orthopaedics and rheumatology appointments.

There were 340 fewer patients on a waiting list for more than a year, with 12,424 people waiting for an appointment last month. 

In April, there were 7,190 outpatients on a waiting list. This dropped to 6,453 in May. 

There was an increase in the number of people waiting for 12 to 15 minutes and 15 to 18 months, respectively. 

There were 743 people waiting for treatment in April, which dropped to 662 in May.