Hospital emergency departments are bracing themselves for a major surge in patient attendances from today, as new figures show 2019 was the worst on record for overcrowding.

The expected increase in attendances is driven by high flu levels and pent-up demand after the Christmas and New Year holidays

The Irish Nurses’ and Midwives’ Organisation (INMO) said that nearly 120,000 patients requiring admission were forced to wait in emergency departments or on wards last year, which was the worst on record for overcrowding.

It’s calling on the Government to increase staffing and bed capacity in hospitals.

University Hospital Limerick had the highest trolley figures in the country with 13 thousand 941 patients last year..

INMO General Secretary, Phil Ni Sheaghdha wants the recruitment ban lifted.

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