Injured minister waited hours for hospital bed
Communications Minister Denis Naughten had to wait several hours for a hospital bed after being struck by a car while cycling.
The accident happened just after lunchtime on Monday, but it was 3am yesterday before Mr Naughten was given a bed in Portiuncula Hospital, according to independent Roscommon councillor Laurence Fallon.
Figures compiled by the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) show there were 18 people on trolleys in the hospital in Ballinasloe, Co Galway, that night.
"Portiuncula has been under severe pressure, numbers-wise in the last week or two," Mr Fallon said.
Mr Naughten suffered back injuries after he was hit by a car from behind while he cycled on the Castlecotte Road just outside Roscommon town.
His wife Mary, who was also cycling at the time, was not injured. A spokeswoman for Mr Naughten last night said he was transferred to Galway University Hospital "for a further and final diagnostic test".
She said he should be discharged this morning.
Mr Fallon, who was speaking to Mr Naughten yesterday, said the incident was "an enormous shock" to the minister's family.
"It was a most unfortunate event and he's is lucky that he is as good as he is, considering the impact," Mr Fallon said.