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12,132 patients went without a hospital bed this January
press release 31/01/2024


Over 12,132 patients, including 278 children went without a hospital bed this January according to the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation. 


The top five most overcrowded hospitals in the country this January include:

  1. University Hospital Limerick 2,073
  2. Cork University Hospital 1,632
  3. University Hospital Galway 1,041
  4. Letterkenny University Hospital 709
  5. Sligo University Hospital 701

INMO General Secretary Phil Ni Sheaghdha said:

“Another January has passed with hospital overcrowding remaining a serious problem in Irish hospitals. There were only three instances this month where less than 500 people were waiting on trolleys, chairs or other inappropriate bed spaces.


“Hundreds of people are sick enough to be admitted to hospital each day but there is no bed for them. Some of the care environments are totally inappropriate, in some instances the care is provided on chairs. It is clear that capacity in the health system isn’t sufficient. We have not seen a significant drop in the number of patients on trolleys. We need more beds and we need more patient-facing staff. The HSE must agree a realistic workforce plan which provides for sufficient nurses and midwives to be employed to provide safe care and plan for more beds to open. 


“Patient safety is of the utmost importance to our members, they want to be in a position to provide safe and timely care. It is the view of INMO members that hospital overcrowding has not improved. On each hospital site the occupancy rate is above 83% which means that the provision of safe care is compromised.”



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Irish Nurses & Midwives Organisation (Cumann Altrai agus Ban Cabhrach na hEireann). The Whitworth Building, North Brunswick Street, Dublin 7. T:+353 1 664 0600 E:inmo@inmo.ie