Specialist team starts work on tackling Limerick hospital overcrowding

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An overcrowded emergency department is a common sight at University Hospital Limerick.

STRATEGIES to tackle record levels of overcrowding at University Hospital Limerick (UHL) were discussed at the first meeting between hospital management and the specialist team assigned to alleviate the problem which was held yesterday (Friday).

Following a steady increase in the number of patients lying on trolleys in the emergency department and corridors elsewhere in the hospital, Health Minister Stephen Donnelly instructed the HSE to send in an expert team to resolve the problem.

The team was asked to establish what additional resources might be deployed, as well as any changes that could be made quickly to alleviate the pressures on the hospital.

After the meeting, a spokesperson for the University of Limerick Hospitals Group said that the discussion included consideration of a long-term and a short-term plan, which will be a collaborative effort between the Hospital Group, the specialist team and HSE Mid West Community Healthcare.

Concerns have also been raised about lengthy waiting times at the hospital with Limerick Sinn Féin TD Maurice Quinlivan stating that, according figures released for last year, 8,720 patients waited more than 12 hours in the emergency department to be admitted or discharged at UHL.

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