Local T.D. John Curran has called on the Health Minister Simon Harris to immediately address delays with patients being discharged from hospitals. Deputy Curran said: ‘Waiting times for hospital discharges have reached unacceptable levels in this country. The fact that 79 people have been waiting over six months to be discharged from hospital is unacceptable. “I am calling on the Minister for Health, Simon Harris to address the long waiting times which are leaving people in hospital when they are ready to be discharged. In response to a parliamentary question I raised, the figures provided show that a total of 382 people who were deemed ready to be discharged from hospitals across the country were left waiting for more than one month to be discharged.

Deputy Curran said that the health system, home help crisis, and capacity issues in hospitals are all linked and more needs to be done to free up hospital beds. “We do not have enough home help hours or step-down facilities. As a result, acute hospital beds are filled for longer than they should be, and Emergency Department wait times grow. More and more families in Dublin that are struggling to care for an elderly loved one are desperate for home support services,” “The government must do more to bring down the list of delayed discharges in hospitals. It is essential that home help targets are met. Older people want to be in their own homes and not to be stuck in hospitals which are already facing serious overcrowding pressures,” concluded Deputy Curran.