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50 on trolleys in CUH

Thursday, 3rd September, 2020 8:35am

A Cork hospital had the highest number of patients on trolleys yesterday with a nurses union warning that Covid-19 and overcrowding make for a “toxic combination”.

50 patients were on trolleys without beds in CUH at 8am on Wednesday morning, the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) said.

It also revealed that across the country, 221 patients were on trolleys, the highest figure since Covid-19 restrictions were introduced in March.

INMO Industrial Relations Officer for CUH, Liam Conway, said: “Covid-19 and overcrowding make for a toxic combination. This is a deadly virus and our frontline members are rightly worried for their safety and that of their patients. Infection control is necessarily compromised in a hospital with patients in corridors and on trolleys.

“The HSE assured us that there would be no tolerance of overcrowding during Covid-19. Yet no actions have been taken and we are sleepwalking back to mass overcrowding.

“It is time for direct government intervention, especially ahead of the annual winter surge. We need to fund extra beds, expand step-down care, and fund additional home care packages. And this all needs a funded workforce plan to recruit additional nurses and midwives immediately,” concluded Mr Conway.

The union is calling for direct government intervention to fulfil that pledge, including:

• Additional home care packages

• Higher staffed bed capacity

• Expansion of step-down facility capacity

 

The worst-hit hospitals on Wednesday were:

• Cork University Hospital: 50

• University Hospital Limerick: 41

• Midland Regional Hospital, Mullingar: 25

• Mayo University Hospital: 22

• Sligo University Hospital: 14

• Crumlin children’s hospital: 13

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