Letterkenny’s Hospital has apologised to patients who had to wait in ambulances before being admitted to the hospital yesterday.
The hospital said that only a limited number of beds were available to patients as Covid-19 hospitalisations continue to soar.
An extremely busy weekend with Covid-19 patients presenting for treatment, led to delays in some patients being taken through to the hospital’s Covid-19 Zone.
RTE News reported that up to 7 ambulances were waiting outside the hospital, with patients waiting to be seen.
Eleven further beds have since opened.
This comes as 6,888 new virus cases were reported yesterday, along with 8 deaths.
The Irish Nurses and Midwives Association have said that they are “exceptionally concerned” about the situation.
Letterkenny University Hospital said that these delays meant that people could not be admitted to the Covid-19 Zone.
Patients were assesed by clinical teams, to ensure they were treated in clinical priority.
A spokesperson said that ambulances continued to be released during the evening.
The hospital have also apologised to people affected by this. They also ackowledged the efforts of their staff.
“Grim and worrying” for hospitals:
The pressure on ICUs in hospitals has been described as “grim and worrying”.
Dr Michael Power also told Morning Ireland that 37 hospital beds are available in the ICU system.
He added that hospitals are to step down scheduled surgery, to prioritise patients facing emergency or critical cancer surgery.
Dr Andrew Westbrook said that “there will be a tsunami of patients presenting to intensive care” if the rise in cases continues.
Táiniste, Leo Varadkar said that the next few days will see a decrease in the number of positive Covid-19 cases. However, the Fine Gael leader warned it may take a few weeks for this improvement to show in the number of people needing hospital care.
But, on a more positve note, Health Minister Stephen Donnelly said that, 140,000 people will be receive their Coronavirus jab by January 31.
Mr Donnelly said, “We’ve accelerated the vaccination programme for nursing homes. From this week and will be doing the next three weeks’ vaccinations in just two weeks”.