Hospital services

INMO calls for the reduction of non-emergency hospital services

The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organization (INMO) has again called on hospitals to reduce all non-emergency activities.

This follows a record 23,281 Covid-19 cases provisionally reported by the Department of Health on Saturday.

As of 8 a.m. Saturday morning, 656 patients were hospitalized with Covid-19, 85 of whom were in intensive care.

In a statement released by INMO, he called for the reduction of non-emergency services in a bid to reduce workplace transmission of Covid-19 in hospitals.

INMO Secretary General Phil Ní Sheaghdha warned of high levels of burnout among healthcare workers.

“INMO today reiterates our call for the reduction of non-emergency activities in our acute public hospital system,” said Ms Ní Sheaghdha.

“Our fragile health services are currently maintained by an exhausted nursing workforce that is experiencing high levels of burnout.

“Annual leave is being canceled by many in order to fill rosters and many nurses report staying beyond their scheduled working hours to care for patients.

According to Ms Ní Sheaghdha, the Irish hospital system is too small to cope with emergency care on top of Covid-19 care and elective treatment.

“It is time for the state to step in and ensure that all the capabilities that can be acquired from the private sector are used,” said Ms. Ní Sheaghdha.

The HSE and the political system have a responsibility to exhausted medical staff to ensure their workplaces are as safe as possible.

“There must be no tolerance for hospital overcrowding as a highly transmissible airborne virus makes its way into our hospitals.

“Improving the air quality in our hospitals must be a priority,” she added.

“As we head into what is traditionally a chaotic time in our hospitals, the normal patterns of January overcrowding in our hospitals should not be tolerated.

“Our hospitals cannot run on the goodwill of staff alone, we need an urgent capacity plan from the HSE.”