Over 700 Patients On Trolleys - INMO

New figures have revealed more than 700 people were waiting on trolleys in hospital emergency departments (ED) today, 11 March.

The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) statistics reveal that this morning, a record-breaking 714 patients were waiting on trolleys throughout Ireland. University Hospital Limerick was the worst hit, with a total of 80 people awaiting admission to a bed.

Fianna Fáil Health Spokesperson, Billy Kelleher, said the figures were "truly shocking".

"Not only are the figures themselves completely unacceptable, but the length of time that patients are being kept on trolleys is extremely worrying," he said.

"I have heard reports of a 64 year old man having spent 109 hours on a trolley in Tallaght hospital – that's over four and a half days. This is surely some breach of human rights?

"The Minister for Health and the HSE have completely failed people this winter. It is now the middle of March and the situation is actually getting worse.

"It is critical that the capacity review, published earlier this year, is acted on as a matter of urgency. To have 714 people awaiting admission shows the distance we need to go before our health system is able to cope with the demands that are being put on it. A population that is getting progressively older means that these problems are not likely to go away soon and the Minister must act without delay."

Sinn Féin's Finance spokesperson, Pearse Doherty TD, said the figure marks a "new low" for the Government.

"Over the past three months the number of people on trolleys has steadily increased and shows no signs of decreasing. We cannot allow this to become normalised," he said.

"One patient waiting on a trolley for treatment is one too many. Anybody in the Government who feels this is not an emergency issue reaching breaking point does not grasp the reality of the crisis in our emergency services."


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