Fianna Fáil TD for Clare, Timmy Dooley, has expressed his outrage at the lack of progress being made on A&E waiting times at the Midwestern Regional Hospital in Limerick, which currently has the highest number of patients waiting on trollies in the country.
“I am listening to harrowing stories week in week out from Clare patients who have been deeply traumatised by prolonged waiting times in cramped and overcrowded conditions at the acute hospital with no end in sight. We are now told that it will be 2016 before the new A&E facility will be opened to the public.
“The facilities are poor but it should be possible with appropriate funding to increase the throughput of A&E, without this increase in funding the new facility to be opened in 2016 will not resolve the crisis.
“The CEO and staff are doing an outstanding job given the resources available to them and if it weren’t for their dedication and hard work, the situation would be a lot worse.
“Limerick Regional Hospital was chosen as the designated acute hospital for the region incorporating Ennis and Nenagh and St John’s. I supported the move at the time because it was in the best interests of patient safety. However, that support was based on the commitment for appropriate investment to support patient needs. Unfortunately this Government has not lived up to their pre-election promises and their years of fake outrage while in opposition. It’s now time for this Government to be called to answer for the appalling state of our A&E facilities at Limerick Regional Hospital.
“It is difficult to see how the Minister for Health will take €620 million out of the health service this year without further undermining patient care. Hospital patients are being put at greater risk as a result of glaring inequalities in the health service and gross mismanagement of the budget.”