SINN Fein councillor Seamus Morris has lodged a complaint with the Health Information Quality Authority (Hiqa) asking it to investigae conditions at the Mid-Western Regional Hospital in Limerick.
Cllr Morris said he was making the complaint about what he called “the complete lack of safety” in Limerick, as an elected representative of the people of North Tipperary.
He pointed out that the hospital was closed twice to new admissions in the last week and Limerick’s fire chief investigated the safety of the hospital due to overcrowding.
“I have, over the last number of years, called on yourselves to investigate the safety of the hospital through Nenagh Town Council and North Tipperary County Council, but, alas, the calls have gone unheard,” he said.
The SF councillor said it had been clear to him for some time that Limerick Regional Hospital in its present form was not large enough for the population in the Mid-West “without the three hospitals that have been decommissioned”.
“Limerick has been in crises for the last week and it is now at the situation where people have lost faith in its ability to provide safe health services, thereby either delaying seeking medical attention or going to seek medical attention in other regions, skewing the health plan of this State.” said Cllr Morris.
He claimed this was putting pressure on other services, with blood tests facing a seven-day backlog. The ambulance services was also under pressure with patients being ferried between hospitals as Limerick fills, “leading to uncontrolled movement of patients who are being moved, not because of medical conditions, but as a reaction to overcrowding”.
Cllr Morris also called on Hiqa to investigate the reconfiguration policy that saw services removed from Nenagh and Ennis to Limerick.
“I would also like a full report from you on what requests have been made to you to investigate Limerick Regional Hospital in the last four years, and by whom and what you have done to this date,” he said.