figures released by the INMO have revealed that the number of those waiting on trollies at the Midlands Regional Hospital has increased by over 5,000% in the past five years.
According to the organisation, which has carried out a comparative analysis of its trolley watch statistics for the months of January to April from 2007 to 2012, there were 11 patients on trollies in the first four months of 2007, compared to 630 recorded between January and April of this year.
The trolley watch counts, on a daily basis, the number of patients, who have been admitted, but who are left on a trolley awaiting an in-patient bed.
However, the analysis shows a decrease between January and April 2010 and 2011 of 16%.
The figures show that during the four month period in 2008, there were ten patients on trollies, 47 in 2009, 203 in 2010, 750 in 2011 and 630 in 2012.
The report also shows the number of closed beds at the Midland Regional Hospital at Tullamore up to May 2 of this year. According to the INMO 59 acute beds have been closed.
Meanwhile 12 beds have been closed at Ofalia House in Edenderry while ten have been closed at the Birr Community Nursing Unit.
INMO General Secretary, Liam Doran commenting on these figures said “the INMO welcomes the drop in numbers of patients on trolleys awaiting an in-patient bed. However, much more work needs to be done to improve this situation and to ensure that patients receive appropriate care. This Organisation is therefore calling for closed beds to be opened and the recruitment moratorium to be lifted, for frontline staff, who struggle to provide safe care and safe practice in hospitals throughout the country, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
“The Minister has correctly prioritised dealing with this national crisis since his election to office. In order to achieve this he must acknowledge the need for additional bed capacity in a number of hospitals and obtain Government approval for the allocation of special funding accordingly.”