Health crisis spiralling out of control in Cork

2 August 2019
By Mary Bermingham

The INMO has today (Friday) stated that Cork health services have been plunged into a crisis due to a combination of problems including record overcrowding levels, hundreds of vacant frontline positions, profound shortages in community nursing and chronic recruitment and retention problems. July saw 1,079 patients waiting on trolleys in CUH, with 58 admitted patients waiting for beds this morning.

Cork University Hospital

The INMO has sought urgent engagement with the health service management and will have to commence discussions on service curtailment if urgent action is not taken. In correspondence, the INMO has sought an urgent response from the South/South-West hospital management, to what it described as an “intolerable” situation requiring the lifting of budget and staffing restrictions. The INMO also requested urgent action on bed capacity.

The situation arises alongside concerns over midwife-to-patient ratios in Cork University Maternity Hospital, as well as ongoing talks at the WRC regarding staff shortages in community facilities throughout the South-West region.

INMO Industrial Relations Officer, Liam Conway said:

“Our members state that the conditions for patients and staff in CUH are intolerable and unsafe. Health service management must take tangible steps immediately to relieve the misery for staff and patients.

“The recruitment process is being delayed at the local level, leaving an already overcrowded hospital short staffed. Immediate action must be taken to address this issue. We cannot head into the Autumn/Winter period with no clear plan to address all of these problems.”

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