Flu outbreak may worsen trolley crisis

Flu outbreak may worsen trolley crisis

The Health Minister's attempts to deal with the trolley crisis may have been dealt a blow, as a flu outbreak may increase the number of people at hospitals.

Minister Leo Varadkar confirmed to the Health Committee this afternoon that there is now an outbreak of flu in the country, with cases almost doubling in a week.

"It is the case that influenza-like illness rates have risen from 15.5 per 100,000 to 29 per 100,000 this week, so we are seeing an influenza outbreak.

"The advice to that is what it always is … people who are high-risk should get vaccinated. If they haven't been vaccinated already, they still should."

Despite the advice not to go to hospital with the flu - the experience of previous years is that people do.

This morning the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation counted 316 people on trolleys.

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