18 April 2023
By Mary Bermingham
The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation has called for a bespoke plan to tackle overcrowding in Cork City as overcrowding records have been broken in Cork University Hospital (92) and Mercy University Hospital (40) with 132 patients have been admitted to hospital without a bed across both sites.
613 patients are being treated on a trolley or chair nationwide.
INMO Assistant Director of Industrial Relations for the Southern Region, Colm Porter said:
“Overcrowding in both major hospitals in Cork has become out of hand, with records being broken in both Cork University Hospital and the Mercy today. It is clear now that this warrants a national response from the Health Service Executive.
“The situation in Cork University Hospital is continuing to deteriorate week on week. Our members are under significant pressure across all wards. The bed deficit that currently exists in CUH is impacting the ability of our members to carry out the safe care they have been trained to provide to patients.
“Immediate engagement is required to ensure that discharge facilities are available in the community and that all capacity that can be used from the private sector is being deployed.”
INMO Industrial Relations Officer, Liam Conway said:
“The conditions in the Mercy University Hospital over the last two weeks have proved to be intolerable for nurses. There are real concerns for nurse safety when it comes to fire safety and infection control due to the levels of overcrowding.
“Our members are calling it for what it is inside the Mercy – dangerous. Patients are being cared for near exit doors and in areas blocking fire safety equipment, this is not acceptable.
“As well as a national response from the HSE, the hospital and the South/Southwest Hospital Group is required today on de-escalation protocols and the cancellation of all non-urgent elective care. “