Saturday 17 March 2018

Trolley crisis returns as 312 hospital patients left without bed

Eilish O'Regan and David Raleigh

The spectre of trolley gridlock returned to our hospitals yesterday with 312 patients left without a bed.

Limerick Regional Hospital was the worst hit with 38 patients on trolleys, but there was also serious overcrowding in Beaumont Hospital in Dublin where 27 were lying on trolleys.

Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Drogheda was clogged with 28 patients on trolleys while other hospitals under pressure included the Mater, St James's and St Vincent's in Dublin as well as University College Hospital in Galway.

Ann Doherty, chief executive of Limerick Regional, said: "We have had a succession of acutely unwell patients over the age of 70 presenting at the emergency department. The emergency department remains open but we appeal to people to go to their GP in the first instance where appropriate," she said.

Work is now under way to open 20 more beds in St John's Hospital in a matter of days.

Although the number on trolleys was high, it is still far off the peaks reached in recent years.

Irish Independent

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