Almost 10,500 patients were left waiting on trolleys in hospitals nationwide last month, 23% more than the same period last year, the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) has said.
According to its latest ‘Trolley Watch' figures, 10,446 admitted patients were left without hospital beds during February compared to 8,515 during the same month in 2019.
The worst hit hospitals last month were University Hospital Limerick (1,286), Cork University Hospital (1,031) and University Hospital Galway (805).
The worst hit Dublin hospitals were St Vincent's University Hospital (535) and the Mater (502), while the worst hit children's hospital was Our Lady's Children's Hospital in Crumlin (41).
"The long-running trolley crisis has to be priority number one in government talks. Some 10,000 people have been lining the corridors and waiting rooms of Ireland's hospitals in February. Our members are forced to provide care in appalling conditions," commented INMO general secretary, Phil Ni Sheaghdha.
She pointed out that qualified healthcare staff "are queueing up to work, but hospitals are unable to hire them" because of the recruitment embargo.
"We have asked the health spokespeople of all the major parties to lift the recruitment embargo, and whatever the make-up of the next government, we will insist that these obstacles to safe staffing are removed immediately," Ms Ni Sheaghdha added.
Discussions on this topic are now closed.