Overcrowded hospital forced to go 'off call' and refuse patients
One of the hospitals worst hit by overcrowding had to go 'off call' last night because it could not admit any more patients.
The escalating crisis in A&E departments forced Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Drogheda to halt admissions.
It is now back on call and receiving emergency patients, according to a spokesman for the hospital.
Normal services resumed at 8am after emergency patients were diverted to hospitals in Dublin and Cavan.
Nurses claimed that at one stage some 71 patients were on trolleys in its A&E but the hospital said the number was nearer to 48.
While it was off-call, emergency patients had to be diverted to hospitals in Dublin and Cavan.
Nurses said the level of crowding was “unreal” and it called on the HSE to activate a major disaster plan on overcrowding.
Hospital consultants began discharging patients from around 7am to free up beds.
There were 341 patients on trolleys across the country this morning waiting for a bed.