Limerick highest in country for patients on trollies

first_imgNewsBreaking newsLimerick highest in country for patients on trolliesBy Staff Reporter – August 20, 2015 585 Andrew [email protected] up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up THE University Hospital Limerick has the highest number of patients waiting on trollies in the country this Thursday with 47 people waiting to to be admitted to the hospital as patients experience long delays.The overcrowding situation is further compounded with the unexpected large numbers presenting in the Emergency department of the Dooradoyle facility where some members of the public say they’ve been waiting for over seven hours.Limerick’s 47 patients on trollies is made up of 13 on the wards and 34 in the trolley ward.Nationally, some 319 patients are on trollies with Beaumont Hospital the next highest with 36 patients on trollies.The numbers of patients together with the delays experienced is in line with the review findings on the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) who analysed the July Trolley/Ward Watch figures and found that 6715 admitted patients,were on trolleys during the past month.This represents a 21 per cent increase, on July 2014, and is the highest ever level of overcrowding recorded for the month of July.INMO general secretary Liam Doran said:“This volume of overcrowding, in our country’s hospitals, during the month of July is unprecedented and cannot be allowed to continue. The additional funding for the Fair Deal scheme, with the reduction in the number of delayed discharges, is most welcome but, obviously, is not enough to deal with the system wide problem.“The health service must be given an additional funding allocation which will allow it, without waiting for the coming winter period or the next financial year, to open additional beds, with extra staffing, immediately”.Mr. Doran concluded: “It must be remembered that these figures represent individual people, who require admission to hospital, and their loss of dignity, privacy and access to care in an appropriate environment, cannot be forgotten and should be our priority. We must now agree sustained actions leading to increased capacity for the health service to deal properly, and safely with every person who presents for care and attention”.A spokesperson from the HSE at the University Hospital Limerick said that the Emergency Department at University Hospital Limerick has seen an unexpected increase in patients presenting over the last number of days which has resulted in high numbers of patients waiting on trolleys and long delays.“UL Hospitals Group apologises that any patient has to wait to be admitted, delivery of the best possible care for patients is our priority from the moment of presentation.   Staff across the Group, are working hard to ensure the optimum care and safety of all our patients during this very busy period.“Amongst the factors contributing to the increase in pressure within the ED is the older age profile of patients presenting along with the complexity of issues they have.   In addition, refurbishment work is underway in one of our in-patient wards to bring the facilities up to HIQA standards, with work due to be completed in November.  The temporary closure of this ward means that the number of beds available for in-patients in UHL has been reduced.The UL Hospitals Group said that the escalation plan has been enacted and among the measures taken to relieve pressure on the ED and reduce waiting times, are the transfer of suitable patients from UHL to Ennis Hospital, Nenagh Hospital and St John’s Hospital; the transfer of appropriate patients to community care settings; and better communication with GPs to ensure patients are referred to the ED only where appropriate.“The UL Hospitals Group encourages visitors to adhere to visitor times; 2-4pm and 6:30-8:30pm with a maximum of two visitors per patient.  Children under 14 years are advised not to visit.“Patients are reminded to keep the ED for emergencies only and to contact their GP or GP Out of Hours services in the first instance.  Local 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.  Patients aged 5 years+ with minor injuries; for example suspected broken bones in arm or lower leg, sprains, strains, minor scalds, burns or cuts are encouraged to visit their Local Injury Units for treatment.“UL Hospitals Group recently announced that contracts had been signed with John Sisk & Son Ltd for the fit-out and completion of the new emergency department and a state-of-the-art new dialysis unit. It is anticipated that the new emergency department, which will be treble the size of the existing facility, will open in the first quarter of 2017.“It is acknowledged that further interim measures will have to be taken to address capacity issues until the new ED opens. To this end, UL Hospitals has reached agreement for additional funding to open 25 extra beds in November to support activity levels in our emergency department at University Hospital Limerick,” the statement concluded. 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