Thursday 14 December 2017

100-year-old woman left waiting on hospital trolley for 24 hours

It is understood the woman (100) was suffering from a potentially serious infection.
It is understood the woman (100) was suffering from a potentially serious infection. Newsdesk Newsdesk

A 100-year-old woman was left waiting on a hospital trolley for 24 hours in one of the country’s busiest hospitals, it has emerged.

The sick woman was admitted to Tallaght Hospital in Dublin on Wednesday, but despite her age she had to wait on a trolley until yesterday evening.

It is understood she was suffering from a potentially serious infection.

The shocking case came to light as figures released yesterday morning revealed that Tallaght Hospital was the second worst affected hospital in the country with regard to numbers of patients on trolleys.

A spokesperson for Tallaght Hospital told "While we are precluded from mentioning individual cases, Tallaght Hospital was aware of a delay that existed in allocating a ward bed to an elderly patient yesterday. The hospital regrets any inconvenience experienced in the course of this delay."

"Tallaght Hospital, like all acute hospitals, is experiencing specific pressures on adult inpatients due to seasonal peaks in service demand. The hospital has a full escalation process in place to address the peak in demand and to continue to provide safe and quality care to our patients." 

According to the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) figures, some 37 patients were waiting on trolleys yesterday morning at the hospital. University Hospital Limerick was the worst affected with 42 patients on trolleys.

Earlier this week, INMO General Secretary Liam Doran said care “continues to be compromised” because of the hospital trolley crisis.

He acknowledged that the influenza outbreak has taken its toll on hospital resources, together with a percentage of patients whose planned hospital admissions were delayed turning up at A&E.

The INMO is in talks with the HSE this week about opening 173 around the country.

The problem is “one about bed capacity and staff capacity”, he said.

February and March are typically bad times for Irish hospitals, Mr Doran said.

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