September 26, 2023

‘Dead bodies on trolleys’ scandal at regional hospital highlights ‘how dysfunctional HSE is’ – Kilkenny TD

A MOBILE refrigerator will be installed at the mortuary of the regional hospital where shocking revelations of dead bodies being left to decompose on trolleys emerged last week.

University Hospital Waterford (UHW) has said the new mobile unit will be on site and operational within the next fortnight.

The move comes in the wave of widespread shock and revulsion at revelations contained in a letter signed by four senior consultant pathologists at UHW to Health Service Executive (HSE) chiefs which became public last week.

In the letter, which was sent last October, the consultants revealed some dead bodies were left leaking fluids in its mortuary corridor and that the unit was so cramped and lacking in temperature control that corpses had to be left in the corridor. In some cases they decomposed, forcing families to have closed coffin funerals.

The need for a new mortuary at UHW was agreed by the HSE as far back as 2006, but it took the publication of last October’s letter in the Waterford News & Star newspaper to secure action.

Kilkenny TD Bobby Aylward said the scandal highlighted “how dysfunctional the HSE is”.

“The HSE have to hang their head in shame here, we’re supposed to be one of the top richest countries in the world and to think that families have to go through that. Imagine you going in and you can’t pay respect to family member by having the coffin closed because of these conditions,” he told KCLR.

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