June 2, 2023

St Luke’s bucks alarming national trend as it halves numbers treated on trolleys


THE number of patients treated on trolleys at St Luke’s General Hospital last month was almost half the number recorded for the same period last year.

A new analysis by the INMO reveals our local hospital is bucking an alarming national trend, with this year officially the worst November on record for hospital overcrowding.

A total of 9,679 admitted patients were forced to wait on trolleys and chairs for beds last month, according to the INMO.

St Luke’s treated a total of 200 patients on trolleys last month. This is almost half the 398 recorded in November 2017, and still considerably less than the 360 and 339 treated on trolleys at our local hospital during the same period in the previous two years.

Yesterday no patients were recorded as being treated on trolleys at St Luke’s.

This is in stark contrast to a much gloomier overall picture that is emerging in other hospitals across the country.

Nationally, there has been an 11pc increase in the numbers of patients on hospital trolleys, crossing the 100,000 mark for the first time on record and making 2018 the worst-ever year for overcrowding.

INMO General Secretary Phil Ní Sheaghdha warned the situation is likely to get worse as Christmas and the New Year approaches.

“January and February are typically the worst months, so nurses and midwives will be looking to the New Year with a sense of dread,” Ms Ní Sheaghdha said.

“But this isn’t just a winter problem anymore, it’s a year-round problem.

“The health service needs more beds. Extra beds require extra nurses, but the HSE simply can’t hire enough on these wage levels,” she added.

Five hospitals treated over 500 patients on trolleys in November:

  • Cork University Hospital: 932
  • University Hospital Galway: 676
  • Letterkenny University Hospital: 581
  • Tallaght University Hospital: 559
  • Midland Regional Hospital Tullamore: 549



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