The Health Minister needs to immediately ensure the situation at University Hospital Limerick (UHL) is reviewed with high trolley numbers this week, a Fine Gael Senator has said.
Senator Martin Conway, from Clare, who sits on the Oireachtas Health Committee, said Minister Stephen Donnelly needs to send the HSE expert team back into the main hospital for the Mid-West region.
“I am extremely concerned that there may be a failure to fully implement their recommendations,” Senator Conway said.
“We are in the summer months which should be a low point in trolley numbers accumulating, yet last Tuesday, there were over 100 patients on trolleys in UHL.
“If this is the case in the month of August, I dread where we will be on the first of November or even worse on the first of January in the winter.
“Last January, a major incident was declared in UHL due to the unprecedented number of patients on trolleys at the hospital.
“As a result of actions following on from this, new protocols for the ambulance services were introduced in Ennis and Nenagh hospitals. Funding was provided by Government to support the initiative which was very welcome.
“I believe that the HSE expert team should be immediately sent to UHL to review the implementation of its recommendations from the previous body of work, to examine the effectiveness of the protocols regarding Ennis and Nenagh hospitals and to identify any other immediate measure that can be implemented to deal with the current situation and avert a catastrophe in the emergency department later this year.
“I believe the Minister for Health needs to direct the CEO of the HSE to take this course of action urgently,” Senator Conway said.