'Unprecedented increase' in patients presenting at St Luke's, Kilkenny in recent weeks

Hospital expects high number of patients to continue to present to ED over coming weeks

Sam Matthews

Reporter:

Sam Matthews

Email:

sam.matthews@kilkennypeople.ie

St Luke's Hospital.

The paediatric ward at St Luke's also remains very busy, and the maternity ward has seen a surge in admissions with four additional beds, being staffed by midwives

The trolley crisis at St Luke’s Hospital shows little signs of abating as the national overcrowding crisis continues into the third week of 2018.

Yesterday (Tuesday) there were 26 patients on trolleys and wards at the local hospital, according to figures from the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO). While the Trolleywatch and Wardwatch figure was reduced to six last week, it had risen back as high as 20 on Monday.

The Ireland East Hospital Group (IEHG) has confirmed the hospital has seen an ‘unprecedented increase’ in the number of patients presenting to the Emergency Department over the last number of weeks, many of whom are recovering from respiratory and other more complex illness. The paediatric ward also remains very busy, and the maternity ward has seen a surge in admissions with four additional beds, being staffed by midwives, opened to cater for the demand.

"Beds did become available in some long stay and nursing home units in the community last week which helped to ease the pressure. Management and staff continue to prioritise discharge of patients who no longer require acute care," said a statement from the IEHG.

"St Luke's would like to thank their colleagues in the community (CHO5) GPs, public health nurses, community nurses, community intervention team and all the carers in the community who have been very busy in supporting them with the ongoing care of patients before and after they are discharged from hospital.  

"The hospital continues to expect a high number of patients to present to the ED over coming weeks as the flu season continues.   Management would ask that where possible patients with flu-like illness / cold symptoms visit their GP / CareDoc or pharmacist in the first instance.  Patients with less complex needs may experience longer waiting times."