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We can’t go back to pre-pandemic levels of hospital overcrowding
Press Release - 31.1.22

Publishing their first monthly TrolleyWatch report of 2022, the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation has said that we cannot allow chronic overcrowding to become the norm once again in our hospitals. 

This comes as 8,636 patients were on trolleys in the month of January, 132% higher than January 2021 (3,715).  

The hospitals with the highest level of overcrowding include: 
1.         University Hospital Limerick (1,300) 
2.         Letterkenny University Hospital (817) 
3.         Cork University Hospital (750) 
4.         University Hospital Galway (738) 
5.         Sligo University Hospital (526) 
Commenting on the January TrolleyWatch figures, INMO General Secretary Phil Ní Sheaghdha said: 

“We cannot allow a return to pre-2020 business as usual in our hospitals where chronic overcrowding is allowed to continue.  

“It is only the first month of the year and we had overcrowding records broken in our hospitals, with University Hospital Limerick logging record overcrowding two days in a row last week. We have seen the highest levels of January overcrowding since the INMO began Trolleywatch in 2006 in University Hospital Limerick, Letterkenny University Hospital, Mercy University Hospital, Portunicula Hospital, Sligo University Hospital, University Hospital Galway.” 

“It is not acceptable to us that chronic overcrowding is allowed to continue while COVID is still rampant in many of our hospitals.  

“Our members are frankly embarrassed and tired of apologising to patients for the poor standard of care environments.  

“The HSE must take steps to ensure that this chronic overcrowding isn’t allowed to continue into February, March and beyond. The HSE should once again issue guidance to all hospitals on curtailing elective surgery until the end of February.  

“Bespoke plans should be produced for hospitals where chronic overcrowding is a persistent feature of the hospital environment.”


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Irish Nurses & Midwives Organisation (Cumann Altrai agus Ban Cabhrach na hEireann). The Whitworth Building, North Brunswick Street, Dublin 7. T:+353 1 664 0600 E:inmo@inmo.ie