Commenting on the Health and Information Quality Authority’s latest hospital inspection reports, the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation has said that the level of unfilled clinical posts as outlined in the reports should be a cause of concern for the Government.
INMO General Secretary Phil Ní Sheaghdha said:
“The INMO commends the work of HIQA in highlighting the often very dangerous conditions that patients are being treated in and Irish nurses and midwives are working in.
“The HIQA reports published today highlight the very serious staffing problems that exist in Irish hospitals. The reports report on inspections carried out in early Spring, we know the staffing and overcrowding situation in acute hospitals has become much worse since then. In the most recent reports published today referencing the situation in April , we know that there was 18% nursing deficit in the emergency departments in Mercy University Hospital and in Portiuncula University Hospital and a 13% nursing deficit in the emergency departments in St. James’s University Hospital.
“With these most recent report and a litany of others by HIQA, Government should not fathom allowing a recruitment freeze of patient -facing staff to happen at this time. With staffing now worse and overcrowding more extensive, not having full clinical staffing complements across all hospital sites will make it much more difficult for the staff who are working in hospitals to carry out their roles safely.
“Successive reports from HIQA highlighting the impact of unsafe staffing - prove that safe-staffing underpinned by legislation is urgently needed. HIQA issue recommendations but have no legislative function to ensure they are adhered to. The reports by HIQA detail the stark reality of unsafe working and patient care but without a legislative basis, their recommendations seem to be falling on deaf ears.”