More than 700 stuck on trolleys at UHG in worst October on record

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Galway Daily news Over 50 patients on trolleys in Galway

Worst October on record for overcrowding

Over 700 patients were left waiting for care on trolleys at University Hospital Galway this month in the worst-ever October on record.

New figures from the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation show that Galway was the second-most overcrowded hospital in the State this month as 716 patients were stuck waiting for a bed.

Across Ireland 9,055 people were left on trolleys this month, the worst-ever October since the INMO started keeping records in 2006.

The worst-hit hospital in the country was University Hospital Limerick with over 1,045 patients on trolleys.

UHG is consistently listed as among the most overcrowded hospitals in the state.

This month’s figure represents a five percent increase on-year and a 442 percent increase since records began in 2006.

According to the INMO, the problem with overcrowding in Irish hospitals is caused by understaffing – mostly due to low pay levels for nurses and midwives.

Earlier this month the INMO voted overwhelmingly to reject government pay proposals to address the issue.

The organisation had requested an across-the-board pay increase for nurses and midwives – but the proposed pay packages would have only benefited around half of the union’s members.

A recent HSE census showed that in September 2018 Ireland’s health service had 227 fewer staff nurses than in December 2017.

And the problems are expected to worsen as winter approaches.

The INMO may decide to vote on a strike at the executive’s next meeting on November 5.