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Widow hopes probe will bring 'closure'

THE widow of the man whose death sparked the investigation by the Health Information and Qualty Authority (HIQA) into conditions at Tallaght hospital has spoken of her ongoing trauma at the experience.

Thomas Walsh (65), from Kilnamanagh, Tallaght, died in a corridor in the south Dublin hospital while awaiting a bed in March last year.

His inquest in June heard that he was one of 38 patients in the so-called "virtual ward" -- hospital corridors and alcoves where patients are left on trolleys -- on the day of his death.

Two of those patients had been there for longer than 24 hours.

Mr Walsh, a pensioner, had been admitted with a severe ankle pain but later died of bronchial pneumonia and heart problems.

His widow Kay told the Irish Independent yesterday that she has spoken to HIQA about the experience suffered by her and her family.

"It (her husband's death) was very traumatic and still is. There might be some closure when all these things are finalised," she said.

Mrs Walsh said she hopes the probe, and the subsequent report, will mark a changing point in the conditions at the hospital.

The HIQA report said it was advised of Mr Walsh's death in April 2011 and that an internal review of the management of his care was under way.

Irish Independent