Serious overcrowding continues into February at St Luke's Hospital in Kilkenny

14-bed ward remains closed due to staff shortages

Sam Matthews

Reporter:

Sam Matthews

Email:

sam.matthews@kilkennypeople.ie

Large number on trolleys in Portlaoise Hospital

A 14-bed winter surge ward has remained closed at the hospital due to ongoing staff shortages

The overcrowding crisis at St Luke's Hospital is continuing into the second month of 2018, with more than 30 people on trolleys and wards today according to figures from the INMO.

Record trolley figures were recorded during January, with periods of easing few and far between. Then, for the first time this week yesterday (Wednesday), the number fell below 30 to as low as four. However, today, it has risen back to 33.

Earlier this week, local TD John Paul Phelan said that 14 extra beds are to be opened at the local hospital ‘within weeks’ to help address the crisis. The junior minister says Minister for Health Simon Harris has given him his word that an 14 additional beds will be provided in February as part of the roll-out of 200 extra beds in hospitals nationwide.

There has been no detail yet on what additional staff are to be provided for these beds. A 14-bed winter surge ward has remained closed at the hospital due to ongoing staff shortages.

The Ireland East Hospital Group has said recruitment is actively ongoing. It's understood that Minister Harris is due to visit the hospital in February.