'There were people all over the place on trolleys and chairs'
CHRISTY Doyle had a suspected clot in his lung but had to wait over 14 hours in St Vincent's Accident and Emergency Department before he was seen by a doctor.
Christy, from Donnybrook in Dublin 4, attended the out-of-hours East Doc on the grounds of the hospital on Wednesday night after developing pains in his chest.
The GP there sought a second opinion before he sent the 62-year-old to the emergency department at 8pm for a scan. Christy told the Irish Independent how he and others around him waited in agony to be seen by a doctor.
"I had a pain in my lung every time I breathed in. I was in pain and I was waiting to see if it was a clot, which for a while they thought it might be," the father of four explained.
Christy said he waited until 3am before deciding to go home for the night. He returned at 8am the following morning and described further "chaotic scenes".
"There were people all over the place on trolleys and chairs, and ambulances just kept coming in but there was nowhere for everyone."
He said a nurse took a blood sample but he was later told he would require a scan. But by yesterday afternoon, he was still waiting to see a doctor.
At one point, Christy said there were more than 50 other patients in the A&E waiting room.
"Another girl, who looked quite unwell, had waited all night and she was still waiting when I came back in yesterday morning.
"She only saw a doctor at 11.45am and was there from 8pm the night before. It's incredible what is happening to sick people," he said.
He finally saw a doctor at 4pm yesterday afternoon. He then had a scan which revealed an infection in his lungs. He was prescribed painkillers and sent home.
"Thankfully, it's all over for me but for the doctors and nurses who are in there working every day it's awful," he said from his home last night.
"It's not right for older people as well. If it was you're mother or father being treated like that, you would be horrified."
The former security guard and porter added that in his view the "closure of smaller emergency departments" was resulting in the "huge backlogs" in A&Es.