Nurses call for emergency period due to hospital trolley crisis

THE Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) has recorded over 600 patients on trolleys, in hospitals around the country, every day this week, bringing the total to a record-breaking 3,112

There have now been 14 days, so far this year, that has seen in excess of 600 patients on trolleys, as compared to 2017, when this occurred on only three occasions for the entire year.

The INMO has renewed its call for a two-week period in March to be declared, and treated, as an emergency period in the Irish public health service, meaning that extraordinary measures should have been put in place to focus on recovering from the extreme weather event.

INMO General Secretary Phil Ni Sheaghdha, said: “We saw record trolley figures this week, as predicted by the INMO, due to pressures on hospitals following Storm Emma.

“The INMO requested an emergency two-week period which the HSE were not willing to implement. This massive surge in attendance at emergency departments was predictable and known to the HSE.

“Any reasonable and responsible employer and service provider would have sought by any means available to them to minimise these risks to patient and staff safety. It is not possible for the hospitals, or staff, to continue to provide safe care under these conditions.

"The INMO is calling for emergency status to be immediately declared and emergency response plans put into operation.”