'Drink tank' for Lourdes hospital
Mayor of Drogheda, Independent Cllr Frank Godfrey, is calling for a Drink Tank to be installed in the Lourdes hospital Casualty Dept to safeguard staff and patients.
Outlining the recent visit of an elderly man to the A&E dept in the Lourdes, he said that the pensioner was deeply disturbed. 'A man told me that when he brought his father to the Emergency Dept recently, they were surrounded by other patients who appeared to be under the influence of drink and/or drugs. He was very frightened and had to wait 8 hours in this environment. It's really not on,' said Mayor Godfrey.
'I believe that drink and drugs are playing a part in this type of behaviour. These people should be put into a separate area where they don't affect older or more impressionable patients. A holding area, a type of Drink Tank, you could say.'
'Despite having security staff on the premises, staff are sometimes physically and verbally assaulted - even the security staff get hit at times, ,I am told. Having these violent patients in with other patients is really not appropriate - they need to be kept apart while they are under the influence or violent. Open a Drink Tank as soon as possible!'
Number of assaults
Meanwhile, Councillor Paul Bell has described as alarming the level of assaults perpetrated on hospital staff in the North East Hospital Group which includes Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital Drogheda and Louth County Hospital Dundalk.
"The evidence based report issued by the HSE records 10,744 assaults over the period 2008 to the end of November 2018. With more that 7.500 of the assaults recorded targeted against Nursing staff. The statistics also recorded a surprising level of assaults against Support Staff Grades with 339 recorded nationally,' he said.
Bell noted that the highest levels of recorded assaults in 2018 have been confirmed in the Dublin North East Group which includes, Our of Lourdes Drogheda, Louth County, Cavan, Monaghan, Beaumont and Connolly Hospitals.
"In our Emergency Departments especially at weekends and over the Christmas period, hospital management engage additional security staff to protect Medical and Care Staff as they go about their work. While this is necessary and gives some degree of confidence to staff, it is my opinion that legislation which deals with assault does not go far enough on prosecution and the processing of complaints made by Hospital staff to An Garda Siochana.'