Fianna Fáil Deputy Charlie McConalogue has called on the Minister for Health James Reilly to immediately address the staffing shortages and resource problems at Letterkenny General Hospital.

The Donegal Deputy has acknowledged that the hospital is operating in unprecedented times following the flooding earlier this year. However he said that the call from the INMO this week for additional staff at the hospital in order to maintain a safe standard of care must be addressed.

“Unless there is immediate intervention from the Health Minister, patient care at Letterkenny Hospital will be put at serious risk,” said Deputy McConalogue.

“Staff in the hospital have gone above and beyond the call of duty to provide the best care possible to all patients in extremely difficult circumstances over the past six months. Their response to the flooding in July was remarkable. But they are now being severely hampered by chronic staff shortages, a lack of space and a lack of resources.

“The Minister needs to take these particular circumstances and difficulties into account and ensure that the hospital is provided with sufficient staff and resources to safely deal with the high level of demand from patients across the region. This demand continues despite the hospital’s restricted environment.

“Letterkenny Hospital must be treated as a special case. It must be given proper support from Government. Given the crisis that the hospital has experienced in the last six months and the severe overcrowding it’s now dealing with, the moratorium on recruitment must be lifted.

“I have contacted Minister Reilly and the CEO Bill Maher of the West/North West Hospital to express my concerns directly and seek immediate intervention,” concluded McConalogue.