Fears hospitals will struggle in winter if Covid-19 resurges

The Dáil will today hear claims that hospitals won't be able to cope this winter unless urgent action is taken immediately.
Fears hospitals will struggle in winter if Covid-19 resurges
File image of a patient in a hospital trolley. Picture: PA
File image of a patient in a hospital trolley. Picture: PA

The Dáil will today hear claims that hospitals won't be able to cope this winter unless urgent action is taken immediately.

A debate will take place on the shortage of beds in the health system.

Denis Naughten says hospitals such as Ballinasloe hospital in Galway have been forced to reduce bed capacity by up to 10% to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

The Independent TD says hospitals have consistently had more than 100 people on trolleys since the start of this month.

"We've now seen, since the beginning of June, on average 100 people a day lying on trolleys across the country. Some of it is quite acute because of Covid-19," he said.

What we need from the Minister now is an outline of specific measures in every single hospital across the country which he is taking to ensure that patients in the post-Covid era are not left lying on trolleys.

"My concern is that come next autumn and winter when we have the influenza, when we may have a resurgence of Covid-19, that our hospitals will just not be able to cope," he said.

"The action needs to be taken now. There are short term measures that can be taken in many of our hospitals across the country to increase the capacity and those measures need to be taken now."

It comes as the head of the HSE says nearly one in 10 people in the Republic have now been tested for Covid 19.

Almost 405,000 tests have been carried out so far and more than 28,000 of them have been positive.

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