Health Minister says situation in Ireland's emergency departments is worse than this time last year.
The Minister for Health, Leo Varadkar has promised a renewed effort to tackle overcrowding in Ireland's emergency departments, after admitting to the media that the current situation was worse than this time last year.
"I would now like to see the Emergency Department Taskforce Action Plan completed as soon as possible and put into operation without delay,” Minister Varadkar said.
He outlined a number of measures aimed at tackling the ongoing problem, including extra beds and recruitment of frontline staff.
TRANSITIONAL CARE BEDS
Mr Varadkar said 250 transitional care beds came on line this month, thats in addition to the 500 beds in private nursing homes that were introduced in January. These beds will be used to free up space in acute hospitals.
A further 173 short stay beds will be utilised for a period of three months to deal with extra hospital admissions, due to the current flu virus.
The minister also said that arrangements are in place in the HSE to recruit frontline staff where it has been established that there is an urgent service requirement. New posts are expected to come on line at hospitals in Dublin, Limerick, Drogheda and Naas.
It's also understood that the HSE will be running a media campaign to encourage members of the public to use minor injury units and local injury units, instead of clogging up emergency departments.
In his statement, Mr Varadkar also said that patients with private health insurance will be diverted to private hospitals where consultants have admitting right , and patients who have been medically stabilised will be transferred to other hospitals that manage patients requiring non-complex care.
All non-urgent elective cases will continue to be deferred, to retain focus on emergency departments.
My Purple Chair
The My Purple Chair title was born from my favourite place to sit and think about what's happening in the world. It's old but comfortable. So i suppose it's a bit like myself!