Staff quite simply are “broken” by overcrowding crisis, claims top consultant – – Our News, Your Views

Staff quite simply are “broken” by overcrowding crisis, claims top consultant

An emergency medicine worker said patients and staff felt “hugely” let down by the Christmas and New Year overcrowding crisis.

Describing the horror of patients who spent hour after hour in emergency rooms waiting to be triaged and unseen, Dr Emily O’Conor said it was “inhumane” to keep asking people to do this.

Speaking of RTÉ’s Brendan O’Connor, she said it’s not good and “we have to start accepting this is not OK in any way”.

She also described the “other victims” of this overcrowding crisis, the employees she says are being “destroyed” by it.

She said the harm being done to people who are expected to work in these circumstances is “is breaking staff, young nurses, senior doctors, people are leaving in their droves,” reports RTE.

Dr O’Conor said the minister was right to seek more staff for the weekends, but staff were already stretched.

She said after going through “terrible” work shifts over Christmas and the New Year, “you have to say how broken do you have to be before you stop doing it”, reports RTE.

The Secretary-General of the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organization, Phil Ní Sheaghdha, said there was a problem as “nobody was to blame” for the overcrowding crisis as the health service is not under a single entity.

“The HSE can blame the department, the department can blame the HSE”, she said, reports RTE.

INMO wants Sláintecare to come under the department of the Taoiseach and have its implementation done within the department, she said.

“The HSE has to have a function which looks to decisions that can be made regionally, so the regional health authorities must have authority,” reports RTE.

She said once we all have a cushion in decision-making and politics, the system will never get better.

She said industrial action was being considered by INMO members because their working conditions were “so bad” and there were concerns about the safety of nurses at work.

Ms Ni Sheaghdha said they would start consultations with members on possible industrial action this week and continue over the next two weeks.

She said they stay with patients but don’t accept the conditions under which they care for them. “We want them to stand with us and also raise this as a national crisis,” reports RTE.

Ms Ní Sheaghdha said there are very good long-term guidelines developed by the Nursing Policy Department that need to be implemented in the surgical and medical departments and emergency departments.

She said they are “unenforceable” at this time due to a lack of funds.

She said there are more decision makers in hospitals this weekend and will wait for the discharge rate tomorrow.

Tell us your thoughts in the Facebook post and share this with your friends.

Share this story with a friend

Share this story

Tell us what you think on our Facebook page