Independent TD Mattie McGrath has said it is now deeply troubling that the very high ratio of patients receiving treatment or waiting for treatment on trolleys in South Tipperary General Hospital is persisting in to its fifth week, without any indication that it will be resolved.
Deputy McGrath was speaking after the INMO’s daily Ward Watch figures for the country’s hospitals were released earlier, figures which state that South Tipperary General has the highest numbers of patients on trolleys in the country, 26 in total.
The figures for Clonmel show that there are 5 more patients on trolleys in South Tipperary General than in Beaumont Hospital with 21, and considerably more than Cork University Hospital with 13 patients on trolleys there.
“I am appalled that this situation has been allowed to fester for the last number of weeks. I have become increasingly worried that what was an anomalously high figure in South Tipperary General is now becoming a pattern with increasingly negative implications for how the Hospital is viewed and more importantly for the safety and wellbeing of staff and patients who must endure this deeply uncomfortable situation.
“I am calling for an urgent meeting with hospital management and with the Regional HSE Manager Anna-Marie Lanigan to try and address this urgent problem. Once again I can only applaud all frontline and medical staff at the hospital who are being forced to operate in these conditions.”
Deputy McGrath went on to say that the situation was something he had raised with the Minister for Health in relation to the knock on effects for patient treatment caused by the seven Medical Registrar vacancies in South Tipperary General.
Deputy McGrath also expressed on that occasion that he hopes there is no attempt to deliberately sabotage the services at the hospital to achieve any unknown aims of the Minister or the HSE.
“We must have firm and effective commitments that the scenario of being ranked among the worst offenders for patient/trolley numbers will be one that is tackled head on by this Minister and management at the hospital. South Tipperary General has an excellent and well established record of patient care. It would be an enormous tragedy to see that all undermined by an inability to come to terms with this issue,” concluded Deputy McGrath.