Some staff members at Mayo University Hospital said they felt 'disillusioned, embarrassed and frustrated' over cross-over between covid and non-covid sections in the hospital last May, according to information released under a Freedom of Information request, to Mayo Aontu member, Paul Lawless.

The latest documents released under the FOI to Mr Lawless, indicate that staff at the Hospital were reaching out to public representatives with their concerns regarding staff and patient crossover in the facility. 

In one email in early May, a staff member said that Ward C, Ward D and the Ortho Ward were "all looking after positive, negative and query patients, there is crossover between staff and this is going on all week".

The staff member also makes reference to "the shambolic way hospital management have dealt with the crisis from the start and the impact it has had on patients, staff and their families" and tells of how staff were, at the time of the email being sent, planning "a lunchtime protest next week". 

Another email was forwarded to the CEO of Saolta, Tony Canavan on 1st May 2020 signed by "a very concerned nurse". This nurse spoke of how the structural changes to the hospital as part of the management of patients had resulted in a unit no longer fit for purpose. The nurse spoke of how "the reduced space makes Covid ED no longer a safe working environment. The nurse went on to note a "huge lack of handwashing facilities", adding that "we no longer have staff changing rooms and no access to showering facilities, no longer access to staff toilets and are to use the toilet facilities for the general public".

Mr Lawless says in addition, a staff member in MUH has told him that there were delays in testing for the virus, and a reduced capacity issue with a thermal cycler PCR machine used in the testing process. He says this was cited by the staff member as central to the problems experienced in the hospital.

He has been speaking to Midwest News today and says the documents released to him under the FOI request make for 'shocking reading'.

 

Midwest News contacted Saolta for a response to these allegations in the FOI documents and we are awaiting a response.

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