University Hospital Limerick tops list in “worst-ever” July for ED overcrowding

Donal O'Regan

Reporter:

Donal O'Regan

Email:

donal.oregan@limerickleader.ie

University Hospital Limerick tops list in “worst-ever” July for ED overcrowding

THE Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) said it was the “worst-ever” July for emergency department overcrowding at UHL.

A total of 9,439 hospital patients were forced to wait without a bed in July  – the highest number ever recorded in the month, according to a new monthly analysis by the INMO.

University Hospital Limerick topped the list with the highest numbers – 1,293. It was followed by Cork University Hospital, 1,079; University Hospital Galway, 707; University Hospital Waterford, 590; Mater Misericordiae University Hospital, 560.

Compared to July 2018, there has been an increase of 33%. When records began in 2006, there were 3,460 patients on trolleys in July, just over a third of this month’s figure. Among the 9,439 patients were 45 children.

INMO director of industrial relations, Tony Fitzpatrick said every day there are hundreds of patients languishing in corridors, waiting for a hospital bed.  Currently over 700 patients cannot be discharged from hospital, he said.

“We expect increased demands on the health service in winter, but now even summer sees patients crammed into corridors on trolleys. It is creating unacceptable risks for patients and health workers alike,” said Mr Fitzpatrick.