Overcrowding crisis in Limerick continues as UHL trolley figures double that of any other Irish hospital across June

Health Minister Stephen Donnelly paid a visit to ULHG campuses in the Mid West yesterday (Friday). Photo: Brian Arthur.

LIMERICK had by far the highest number of patients waiting on trolleys after being admitted to hospital without a bed in June.

That’s according to newly released figures showing those waiting on trolleys in University Hospital Limerick (UHL) as more than double any other hospital in the country throughout the month.

According to June statistics just released from the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) Trolley Watch count, UHL had 1,689 admitted patients waiting on trolleys or in overflow wards for a designated hospital bed.

That’s more than double the next most overcrowded hospital, which was Sligo University Hospital, with 822 patients left waiting for a bed.

The numbers were revealed yesterday (Friday) as Health Minister, Stephen Donnelly was in town, visiting hospitals in Limerick and Clare in the UL Hospitals Group.

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While the June figures for this year are an improvements on June of last year, when there were 1,829 patients without beds in the month, it marks a massive increase on previous years.

Overcrowding figures at the Dooradoyle have spiralled by 337 per cent in ten years, with just 386 people admitted without a designated bed in June 2013.

In June 2008, before the close of the emergency departments in St John’s, Nenagh, and Ennis Hospitals, trolley figures in UHL stood at just 94 – 1,696 per cent lower than this past June.

Indeed, on one day alone this month, June 28, there were 98 people waiting on trolleys in the Emergency Department (ED) and on wards elsewhere throughout UHL.

The new figures also marks a 102 per cent increase on pre-Covid figures in 2019, when June saw 833 people on trolleys across wards and the ED.