independent

Thursday 17 October 2019

Trolley issue still evident in hospital

Brendan Keane

On average there were only 30 fewer people waiting on hospital trolleys in Wexford General Hospital last month than there were over 12 years ago.

In 2006, when the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) first began its Trolley Watch initiative, during October there were 166 people waiting on trolleys in the local hospital.

However, last month, 12 years later, there were 136 patients in the hospital on trolleys.

During the 12-year period since the Trolley Watch initiative was established the lowest number in Wexford was recorded in 2015 when, in October that year, the average number of people waiting was six, however, in 2011 the figure reached an all-time high at 462.

According to the INMO, as of last Friday, November 16, there were 16 people on trolleys in the A&E department at the hospital while there were an additional 8 patients - above the stated complement of their in-patient wards - waiting on beds, trolleys or chairs.

According to figures from the HSE at 8 a.m. yesterday morning there were 12 patients on trolleys in Wexford General Hospital and of those five were waiting over nine hours. However, by 2 p.m. the overall number had reduced to seven patients waiting and of those three were waiting in excess of nine hours.

Meanwhile, the INMO said the October figures represented a 124 per cent increase in the number of people on trolleys compared to when the Trolley Watch initiative began in 2006.

University Hospital Waterford was one of five main regional hospitals with over 500 patients waiting on trolleys last month and the INMO says much of the overcrowding is down to under-staffing caused by low pay levels.

Wexford People

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