Sinn Féin TD for Dublin Mid-West TD has called on the Minister for Health to urgently implement a Zero Tolerance Plan to end long emergency department waits.
Teachta Ward’s remarks came as new data from the HSE shows that the average patient experience time to admission at Tallaght University Hospital ranged from 19.3 hours to 27.5 hours.
The data shows that average emergency department wait times in Dublin Mid-West are 19.3 hours at the Tallaght University Hospital Emergency Department for a patient aged 75 or older, and 27.5 hours for a person under 75.
Teachta Ward said: “The government must take a zero-tolerance approach to hospital overcrowding and long emergency department waits. “Patients have been suffering the torturous consequences of overcrowding for years, but these figures show that the problem has reached a new extreme.
“For April, average emergency department wait times are 19.3 hours at Tallaght University Hospital Emergency Department for a patient aged 75 or older, and 27.5 hours for a person under 75. “That is not the extreme end of the scale – that is the average, and it is both shocking and frightening for those patients and anyone looking on.
“The HSE target is all patients admitted within 6 hours, but only 1-in-3 patients are admitted in that timeframe “12+ hour waits in emergency departments are unacceptable for any patient, but especially for elderly people who are often presenting with complex and multiple health needs, as well as mobility issues.
“Hospitals elsewhere in the State, such as Our Lady of Lourdes in Drogheda and in Cavan Hospital, have been very successful in reducing ED waits. “All hospitals must act on each other’s successes and failures, and it is the Minister’s responsibility to ensure that the HSE is implementing best practice in each and every hospital.
“We urgently need a zero-tolerance plan to end excessive emergency department waits.”